Garden enthusiasm for summer.
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A Time For Roses

The Summer began with the old fashioned roses and apexed with the June overflow of every sort of rose bursting forth with bloom. It was a time for heady fragrance, and the roses -all hardy ones- were lovely this year.

Fragrance is one of "my things", and a rose without it doesn't interest me. I can't imagine our gardens without the addition of special seasonal scents. If your garden didn't give you as much fragrance as you'd like, now is a good time to plan for next seas since late summer and fall are good times to plant new shrubs and perennials

The rose pictured is Hansa, a Rugosa rose.


This month is always a hothouse of growth, and that means weeds.

I've been weeding like crazy this month, but because of the cooler temperatures we experienced it has really been more pleasant than a chore.
It is also a great time for cookouts, harvesting produce and enjoying the fruits of the garden.

Zinnias are my favorite cut flower for July- so cheerful and bright!

Timely Tips and Reminders

  • Weed and water in the morning when ever possible, better for you & better for the plants.
  • You should have planted the shrubs, trees, and perennials by now. The drier your area is in late summer, the more you should consider waiting til fall for this type of planting. Sow annual seeds for abundant color this summer.
  • This is when your hoes come in handy. 
  • I know sprinklers are fun, but for serious garden watering, have you tried soaker hoses?
  • Deadhead the annuals, give them a "haircut".
  • Don't pinch back chrysanthemums and asters anymore. Just water and feed for fall burst of bloom. Mums are heavy feeders

What do I like to do in this season?  Get all the garden looking as good and well-weeded as possible. Once the weeds get established they are much more difficult to remove.

New pages:
I wrote up the July Chore Reminder this month. Sorry about missing last month's newsletter and task tips. I wrote about the reason for that on the Journal.
What I Weeded Out - Report on June turned into a post about weeds.
July chores
Low Growing Summer Perennials


Cool Recipes

I found some blogposts on using Purslane weeds for food. So in light of my weeding efforts I am posting this easy, and delicious sounding recipe for those of us who would like to try it. It is from Kalyns Kitchen.

Chopped Middle Eastern Salad with Purslane

(4 generous servings)

3 large tomatoes, diced, salted, and drained
1 large cucumber, diced small
2 cups chopped purslane
1 cup finely chopped parsley
1/2 cup finely chopped mint
salt, fresh ground pepper to taste

zest of one lemon
2 T fresh lemon juice
2 T extra virgin olive oil
1 T mayo or plain yogurt

Dice tomatoes in 1/2 inch pieces, place in colander, sprinkle with salt, and let drain while you prepare other ingredients. Chop cucumber in 1/4 inch pieces and place in large bowl. Trim purslane, discarding roots and large stems and keeping tender stems with attached leaves. Wash well in salad spinner, rinsing several times. Chop coarsely so pieces are about an inch long. Add purslane to cucumbers. Wash mint and parsley, spin dry, chop finely with chef's knife or food processor, and add to cucumbers and purslane.

Zest lemon and squeeze juice into small bowl. Add mayonnaise or yogurt to lemon juice and whisk until well combined. Keep whisking as you add olive oil, about half a tablespoon at a time, until all oil is combined with other ingredients.

Remove tomatoes from colander, blotting dry with paper towel if they still seem wet. Gently combine tomatoes, cucumbers, purslane, mint, and parsley. Drizzle dressing over and combine again. Season salad with salt and freshly ground pepper and serve immediately.
Silverbell tree flowers
I finished up an article on the making of a Secret Garden. for the photos, (including the one to the right) I tool pictures of the Secret Garden at the Inniswood Metro Park.

This small garden tucked away in a side path is created within ruins constructed just for this garden. It has a fine mist, a fountain and feels very intimate. 

What to do this month?

You should know if woody plants have made it or have trouble and are dying by now. Remove diseased parts, consult with pros to see if a dying tree can be saved. We've had more water than usual, but normally July and August have dry spells. Check the soils and deeply water if necessary.
  • Water if rains delay
  • keep harvesting your produce
  • Remove diseased branches 
  • Handpick insects if necessary. Burn or destroy.
Plan for the fall garden. Planting the late vegetables will be here before you know it, bulbs go on sale starting in August. Plan for what you want to do in the garden this fall.

Plants go on sale, as does yard furniture towards the mid to end of July.

What is new on the site?

The Secret Garden Post
Quotes like the one on "The Secret of Weeding"
Butterfly Bush which is a summertime bloomer attracts butterflies.

My Links This Month

I have done a bit more on Instagram, although it isn't a main activity.
Garden Journal "Instagram Walk".

I liked Almost Farm Girl -check it out this month.
Garden Diary is another one.

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The numbers of butterflies and bees has been alarmingly low in my garden this year.

Also I had a real problem with bagworms, more than any other year. I'll write about it when I get a moment! Have you had more problems with certain pests this year?
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