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Lawn & Garden

How to Care for Your Vegetables in Hot Weather

 

Your vegetable garden will require regular care for it to have a fruitful harvest.  Some areas will be aided by Mother Nature when it comes to watering and some will not.  Watering correctly will be crucial for a good summer and fall harvest. 

 

Hot Weather Watering

 

During the hot summer weather, it will be necessary for you to water your vegetable garden 2-3 times a week.  Do not get into a hurry when it comes to watering your vegetable garden.  The best method for watering your vegetables is deep watering.  This will encourage the root system of your vegetables to grow further down into the soil. 

 

Tomatoes are a great deep root plant, but veggies such as beans will have a shallower root system and will need to be watered more often than your tomatoes.  The best time to water will be in the early morning.  This way your garden plants will be hydrated for the heat of the day. 

 

Water Early

 

During the hot periods of the day, plants such as cucumbers, squash and zucchini may wilt slightly due to the large leaves and loss of moisture but they should recover as the evening cools off.  Try to avoid watering in the evening as the cooler temperatures and the additional moisture can be the open door for many fungal diseases.  Early morning watering is best if your vegetables are on a sprinkler system.  They will have a chance to dry out before the weather cools down in the evening. 

 

 

When watering your vegetables, be sure to direct a gentle stream of water to the base of the plant.  If the plant is in a pot, be sure to water the whole surface of the pot.  Potted vegetables can be particularly challenging because they may need water every day during some of the hot summer and fall days.  Mulching your veggies in a pot will also help to keep the soil moist.  Use at least an inch to 2 inches of mulch in your potted vegetables to help reduce moisture loss from the soil. 

 

 

Shade Your Tomatoes

 

In some areas such as Texas, Oklahoma, Georgia, Florida, Southern California, and the Desert Southwest, the use of a shade clothe will be a necessary addition to your tomato gardening area to prevent  blossom drop.  When the daytime temperatures hit 85°-90° F and the nighttime temperatures stay around 75°F, the tomato flowers fail to pollinate and then drop off.  The longer this heat spell lasts, the longer your fruit production will be delayed. 

 

 

Check Your Plant Tag 

 

The plant tags for your vegetables call for at least 6 hours of full sun.  This is great for most of your veggies except for your tomatoes.  The best location for the tomatoes will be full morning sun with afternoon sun and shade mix.  The hottest temperatures usually occur between 10 am and 2 pm.  The use of a shade clothe will reduce the damaging intensity of the sun during those excessively hot periods.  Shade Cloth can be found in Garden Department of your local Home Depot.

 

Researchers have found that the best yield from your tomato plant comes from full eastern sun exposure and afternoon protection from the hot rays.  If you are not able to provide afternoon shade, make a simple shade structure using PVC and shade cloth to provide the needed afternoon shade.

 

If you live in an area that does not have a blistering hot sun in the afternoon or if you have shade in the afternoon, a shade cloth may not be necessary.

 

Please share your gardening tips and ideas with us and be sure to let us know if you have any further questions. 

 

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Posted 2015-07-17T21:18:27+0000  by Rick_HD_OC Rick_HD_OC
 

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Posted 2015-08-03T08:18:44+0000  by kriths234
 
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