Mild, moist summer is lifesaver for distressed trees, perennials

The moderate weather at 10 to 15 degrees below normal summer highs combined with cooler night temperatures and refreshing moisture is allowing many of our plants to restore their health and start to save or store some energy or food for the future.
Oklahoman Published: August 5, 2013

The flowering annuals are producing waves of color in our gardens and containers. The plants have all been growing so much that you may want to fertilize with a granular, slow-release or water-soluble fertilizer to take maximum advantage of the nicer growing conditions.

Don't forget you can still plant container-grown plants, even in August, as long as you are prepared to water the new plantings when needed. Most all of your plants will benefit from mulching the top of the soil with bark, hulls or straw to reduce surface evaporation, reduce weed pressure and to keep soil temperatures more consistent while cutting your watering in half.

This is shaping up as a great gardening season with a good harvest of fresh produce and pretty and happy flowering crops. One of the stars of the summer garden are the many varieties, colors and sizes of crape myrtles, which are creating their own flower show or festival across our state.

Get outside and enjoy your garden, our pretty parks and the beautiful landscapes across our community, so you can get ideas and inspiration of what you want to try next in your yard.

Rodd Moesel serves on the Oklahoma Farm Bureau State Board and the Oklahoma State University Agriculture Dean's Advisory Committee. He is a former president of Oklahoma Greenhouse Growers. Email garden and landscape questions to rmoesel@americanplant.com.