What's Missing From Your Garden's To-Do List?

Jul 15, 2016

In the height of the growing season, it's important to keep a careful eye on your beloved crops.

In this episode of Talk of Iowa, Charity Nebbe talks with Assistant Director of Remain Gardens, Aaron Steil and ISU Extension Horticulturist Richard Jauron to answer listener questions about pruning, mulch alternatives and organic pest solutions. Here's their to-do list for taking care of perennials and other plants.

-- Weeding: One of the most important things your garden needs from you. Removing the pesky plants you don't want at first sight is the best way to keep your garden safe (and make sure to keep those barren areas covered too).

-- Watering: Also extremely important, this task is absolutely essential, as rainwater won't always be enough. But make sure you aren't over-watering either, as that can be just as bad.

-- Deadheading: While mostly cosmetic, this helps set seeds and may also play a role in additional flower buds and fruit production, especially in Peonies, Purple Coneflowers, and other perennials. 

-- Harvesting: Most vegetable gardens should be almost ready to harvest, get picking on beans, zucchini, tomatoes, and even some sweet corn.

-- Scouting: Be on the lookout for pests and disease, insects thrive in the hot weather, and are much easier to handle when found early on.

Don't forget to swing by the ISU Horticulture Research Station for the 30th Anniversary celebration of Horticulture Day, Saturday July 30th from 1:00 til 4:30 p.m.