What was pretty in May....
And in June
By August, awful.... so bad that I cannot bear to look at any pictures.
But there is a lesson in the August garden.
By nature, I have a brown thumb. Yes, you read that correctly. I said a "brown" thumb. Some of my friends can put a stick in the ground and flowers come up in a couple of weeks.
But I have to work hard to create a pretty yard. August is the month of truth. All my weaknesses are on display for friends and family.
- The grass has died in several areas.
- Tomatoes.. brown stems and look awful.
- Roses are ugggg....
- Big holes in the perennials where the dahlias did not come back. Hollyhocks died back.
- All the pots look tired.
So what is the lesson of the August garden?
- First, gardening is just as much about successes as failures. I became a better gardener by making lots of mistakes, killing lots of plants and the next year, trying again. Be persistent. It will pay off.
- Take an inventory of what you need.
- As pretty as the garden centers are in spring, I have never really had luck planting bushes, roses, or perennials in the spring. I have now sworn off planting anything but vegetables or annuals in the spring. Fall allows them to develop a strong root system so they can withstand the heat of the summer.
- Soil, soil, soil.... several flower beds need some serious amending. I don't have enough compost for them but will figure out how to layer 4 inches of compost, a layer of dry leaves, soil for the top of the layers, bone meal and lastly, I am going to order some worms for the flower beds. They will help loosen the soil and make the compost, leaves and dirt richer for next year.
- Fertilize. I am a bad fertilizer. I forget. Compost tea will be my weekly tea for the flower beds. I have another 8 months to figure out how to make it.
- September will be busy aerating and seeding the lawn.
- Lastly, winterize the garden with a thick layer of straw and some compost to hold it down.
Next year will be better... as always a gardener has hope for next year.