Rescue Your Plants from Heat Waves

Real Estate Agent with Prudential Fox & Roach, Realtors

It's the first official full day of summer, but from the heat we're experiencing here in central New Jersey, you'd think it was the middle of August. Let's face it; you can’t turn off the sun. But you can turn on your hose and save your plants by watering wisely and well throughout the summer months. Follow these helpful tips from HouseLogic to keep your lawn lush and beautiful all summer long.

Jim Sutton of Longwood Gardens in Pennsylvania has nursed shrubs and trees through several heat waves, and he offers four vital tips on how to help your landscaping beat the heat:

First, know when your plants are stressed; you can often tell because many stressed plants actually look thirsty. Green foliage turns gray and droops; blossoms and leaves fall to the ground in a desperate attempt to save the shrub. A deep watering often brings a plant back, or at least saves it so it’ll bud next year. If the leaves are crispy, or the plant continues to look parched in the evening, then accept the fact that it's dead. Add it to the compost pile to someday nourish its luckier neighbors.

Next, throughout periods of heat and drought, save what you can in this descending order:

  • Newly planted shrubs and trees, vulnerable and pricey landscaping

  • Perennials: Cut blossoms and stalks, which gives plants a rest and raises chances of returning next year.

  • Established trees and shrubs, at least two years old, which have deep roots.

  • Container plants: Move them onto a porch or under a shade tree.

  • Vegetable gardens

  • Lawns

Water deep, not often. Water should reach eight to 12 inches down, creating a well of water for plants and trees to draw upon in high heat. To determine if you’ve reached your mark, press a large screwdriver into the soil: If it meets resistance, keep watering.

Hand-watering with a garden hose and aerator is best. Count to ten as you water the base of plants. Move and repeat. If you have lots of property to water, use a sprinkler but adjust it so it doesn’t waste over-spray on driveways and walkways.

Water in the early morning: Not 7am when you usually roll out of bed, but when the sun rises at 5am or 6am. If water restrictions require only evening watering, soak them well and don’t fret about fungus forming on leaves that stay damp throughout the night: A little powdery mildew won’t kill your shrubs, but dehydration will.

Finally, if you didn’t mulch in spring, do it now. Mulch will keep moisture in the ground and suppress weeds, which compete with landscaping for water. If you haven’t mulched, water thoroughly, then add mulch to a depth of three to four inches.

The Marchany TeamKNOWS central New Jersey.We're right where you are, whether you're in South Brunswick or Monroe (Middlesex County). If you're looking for a terrific new home in Mercer County, we're prepared to search for your place in the sun in Princeton Junction, East Windsor, West Windsor, and Robbinsville. And if you're ready to put your Franklin Park or Hillsborough (Somerset County) home on the market, we're prepared to find the buyers who are looking for your home. Call The Marchany Team today at (732) 997-0019, and don't forget to “Like” us on Facebook! We are dedicated to helping you in every way possible.

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Erv Fleishman
Realty Associates - Boca Raton, FL
Luxury Prop Specialist Realty Associates

Remember, if you are out in the heat follow the same instructions for yourself. 

Stay well hydrated.

Use a wet towel to cool off your neck.

Wear mulch or a hat. 

Jun 21, 2012 02:24 PM #1
Lorraine & Gilbert Marchany
Prudential Fox & Roach, Realtors - South Brunswick, NJ
The Marchany Home Selling Team

Erv, you're absolutely right - thanks for the feedback. I think I'll pass on wearing the mulch and just go with the hat, though lol!! Hope you're having a great week.

Jun 27, 2012 02:15 PM #2
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