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Dog Days of Summer - August Gardening tips
Gary Guzman

Well these truly are the "dog days of summer". It is still hot some days really humid and every now and then not a bad day at all.
Here are a few tips to keep your garden and a few specific problems from getting away from you during the month of August gardening. Your lawn, again usually three things or any combination of them may be the culprit(s) for making your lawn or patches of your lawn turn brown.

Check water first. It may be that your sprinkler is just not applying enough water to certain areas of your lawn. Remember if you can see your footprints in the lawn after you walk on it then it is time to get water on it asap. If the patchy brown areas of your lawn feel slightly "warmer" than the green areas of your lawn it usually means that particular area is not receiving enough moisture. It is best to core holes in this area, which will help deliver water right to the roots. The second item you may want to check will be for grubs.

There will be no mistaking these creatures. They are usually about the size of your thumb, creamy white with a brown head. They will feed on the grass roots to store up for winter and "hibernate" and emerge next year as adults.

These adults are the May and June beetles your see flying around at dusk in early summer. There are granular and liquid insecticides as well a natural beneficial nematodes to help control these critters.

The third item to check for will be a fungus. If you look closely at the blades of grass that are just around the edge of a dry patch you may notice lines or markings on each individual blade(s) of grass. If you have already checked for water or grubworms and are sure these two are not the problems this could be whats making your lawn turn brown.

There are also granualar and liquid fungicides available to help with this situation.

If you have any flowering trees or shrubs such as roses, crape myrtle, vitex, bird of paradise, oleander, among others it is very important to remove the "spent blossoms" as they appear. This action will help keep your flowering plants blooming up until frost. If this is not done the plants will spend a lot of energy into forming seeds at the expense of new blossoms.

Remember this usuallly works on just about any flowering plant. If your plants are looking a little pale in color you may want to incorporate some iron into your soil. Plants and lawns can lose some of their deep green color this time of year due to so much watering.

The soil may get leached out of it's nutrients by August so it is important to replace these minerals with chelated iron or Ironite. This not only puts a deep green back into the foliage but also makes flowers more vibrant.

If it has been more thant 5 to 6 weeks since you last fertilized your lawn then it is time. For this area a 16-8-8 fertilizer with iron, sulphur and zinc is recommended. This may be used on a fescue, rye or bermuda lawn, as well as trees and shrubs.

This article "Dog days of Summer" is free to use as long as the following is attached: - Author Gary Guzman Website:

About the Author

Gary Guzman: Owner of Guzman's Greenhouse. Over 25 years retail gardening experience.

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