June was named for Julius Caesar. The month was first called Quintilis, which means fifth, for it was once the fifth month of the year. But Caesar decided to make it the seventh month, renaming it July in honor of himself.
Mums should be pinched back three or four times in the summer to make them bushy, but no more pinching after July 10. Also add some low-nitrogen fertilizer in July and August, watering it in after each application.
Japanese beetles are traveling and visiting our precious plants and flowers; they feast on more than 300 varieties of plants. Spraying with Sevin is the best way to rid your garden of the insect. Remember, beetle traps only entice beetles to visit your yard. Sevin can also be used to control the cucumber (spotted) beetle, which damages melons and squash.
Since the heavy rains have resulted in an explosion of mosquitoes, be sure to use an insect repellent when in the garden. If you haven’t had your lawn mower blade sharpened since spring or last fall, it is well overdue for service. Check the oil level each time before mowing, changing it at least twice during the mowing season. Take care of your lawn mower, and it will take care of your grass-cutting needs.
If you haven’t divided your irises for four to five years, dig them up and find new places to beautify. Believe me, you will have plenty to replant or share. If the foliage is brown on the side and reaching down toward the rhizome, it probably indicates that the iris bore is present. Toss any infected rhizomes along with the foliage into the trash, not on the compost pile. Replant the rhizomes and add some fertilizer.
July is the best time to feed summer-blooming bulbs such as lilies.
Enough chores for this month, so get down on your knees and be thankful.
“In what profession can a person be an inventor, scientist,
landscape artist, ditch digger, research problem solver and
soil expert and on top of all that eat one’s success at dinner?”
– Dorothy Gilman.