|Lemon Queen Sunflower|
El Nino has given us several blessings this winter/spring with extra rain (more snow pack, yay) and a longer cooler spring. The last time I remember an El Nino spring like this one, when the 100s finally hit in June they hit with more heat even than normal (remember we typically hit our first very hot days in mid to late June, then things start to calm down - a little - with the Monsoonal rain wind shift).
So keep your moisture meter handy and eye on the plants. Check moisture in the early morning NOT mid-afternoon when the plants with thin leaves may "droop" to retain moisture in the hot sun.
I love the "Lemon Queen" Sunflowers and this one set against our blue sky is just one of those "sigh" relaxing moments. There is another "pose" below. I could not choose between them so I am posting both! :-)
AND you can still sow (direct sow) sunflower seeds into early July.
Peas, Black Eyed
USING existing plants you can under- seed with: Basil, Chives, Shiso, and Epazote
EDIBLE FLOWERS TO PLANT:
Roselle, Jamaica Sorrel (Hibiscus sabdariffa) (not too late to direct sow seeds)
GARDEN TIPS for June
June through August in the Desert Southwest is the equivalent of winter in North Dakota — you maintain what you have planted, taking special care of young or sensitive plants. With the exception of August when the heavy pre-fall seed “sowing” begins, it is a good idea to hold off on any major transplanting until the fall when the temperatures drop back to prime planting weather (below 90 daytime).
Our Flower Mulching technique can be used to protect young plants by canopying the soil around them, placing the flowering plants very close to the base of the young plants. (Flower Mulching:: Choose a 6-pack of flowers - image a 12 inch diameter circle, sow or transplant the focused edible surrounded by 4-6 of the flowers. This creates a soil canopy - keeping it cooler - while allowing the focused plant to get all the sun it needs.
Heavy watering requirements may result in yellowing of leaves due to iron deficiency, especially of fruit trees (Chlorosis). Apply Ironite or Green Sand before next watering to correct.
Sowing corn for fall harvest, plant ONLY one variety at a time, so you can save some dried corn after harvest for re-sowing. You can sow corn twice a year.
Use your moisture meter to determine if you need to change the frequency of watering adjusting to the higher temperatures. Did you know you can actually over water when the humidity starts ramping up in July? Again use that meter.
Begin looking into what you will be sowing mid to late July and Early August for fall growth. If you want winter squash or pumpkin you need to count backwards from Halloween or Thanksgiving 90-120 days for sowing. Also you can seed in winter herbs such as Cilantro, Chervil, Dill and Parsley in August and the seeds will germinate when the soil begins cooling. You need to make sure the sown area stays moist. Light Leaf cover helps.
-- Catherine, The Herb Lady
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