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Weather is always weirder than we remember or expect, so we’re just continuing the pattern. But this coolness after that barely-hot spell is definitely bespeaking Spring instead of Summer. I personally love the cool mornings with sun burning through the cloud cover for midday. But I know the tomatoes and squash and cukes ad infinitum thrive on the heat and intense sun. So I keep waiting for our usual burning heat of Summer to finally happen.
Should I start a garden now?
A friend of mine, in anticipation of being able to determine his own Father’s Day activities, asked if he was too late in the season to begin incorporating amendments and planting.
Expecting the summer heat to be upon us any day, I warned him that the amended soil would warm up as the microorganisms from the mix of manure, compost, and coffee grounds would heat up too much to plant transplants for about two weeks.
I urged him to dig in the amendments and purchase the plants, but to wait to plant them until his hand stuck into the soil six inches deep was barely warm, indicating that the plant roots wouldn’t be “burned” by the still-active soil mix.
He’s accomplished the amending, and has the transplants waiting nearby so they acclimate to the climate of their new home.
The weather forecast through July 6 is for low-to-mid 80s daytime temperatures, so getting those seeds and plants in should be just fine.
So, I’m doing more seeding and transplanting than I’d planned, as well.
If you choose to, as well, just be sure that you purchase healthy plants that have extensive roots but aren’t rootbound in their pots.
For vegetables and flowers, purchase four-inch-size pots. You want more root system at this time of year than is provided in 6-packs, since you want them to be able to quickly establish themselves into your garden beds before summer heat arrives and stresses the plants.
For More Garden To-Dos
See June and July tasks.