Big, Bright Blooms
Mandevillas offer beautiful flowers from summer until frost. Plant them to grow on a trellis, arbor, or fence. They also work well in large containers and can climb up a topiary frame. Great selections include ‘Red Velvet’ (red-pink), shown at left; ‘Sun Parasol Crimson’ (red); ‘Alice du Pont’ (pink); and ‘Sun Parasol White’ (white). Mandevillas bloom best in full sun and love the heat and humidity of summer. They climb by twining. Plant them in fertile, well-drained soil. Feed them regularly for lots of blooms. Use a water-soluble fertilizer such as Schultz All-Purpose Liquid Plant Food 10-15-10 or a granular, slow-release product such as Osmocote Outdoor & Indoor 19-6-12. You can also try a continuous slow-release fertilizer such as Dynamite Organic All-Purpose 10-2-8.
The summer solstice comes on June 20, heralding the beginning of summer. If the heat has not been enough of a reminder of the season, take a moment each week to write down observations of your garden in a notebook. Keeping a journal is a great way to learn about gardening.
As your tomato plants prosper, secure them with a product such as Sturdy Stretch Tie, which we found at www.plantitearth.com. This tape stretches as your plants grow without harming the stems. It also works well for other summer favorites such as Oriental Hybrid lilies, dahlias, and gladiolus. You can also find it at your garden center.
Try this successful combination. Take a 24-inch-diameter pot, plant one purple fountain grass (4-inch pot), two ‘Lucky Honey Blush’ lantanas (4-inch pots), and one purple heart (4-inch pot). Place in a location that receives full sun. Enjoy!
As the days become warmer and plants in your pots fill out, they may need more water. The next time you finish watering with the hose, fill up your watering can. This way you can easily give your plants a quick drink between regular waterings if they need one, and you won’t have to drag out the hose every time.
Fertilize warm-season grasses such as Bermuda, St. Augustine, and Zoysia now. Use PennGreen All in One Fertilizer 16-4-8 or Scotts Southern Turf Builder 26-2-13 at this optimum growing time. For centipede, use a specially formulated fertilizer such as Sta-Green Centipede Weed & Feed 15-0-15