What do to in the garden in July? The vegetable garden is producing a lot and getting out of hand at the same time, so there are plenty of garden chores to do. July is HOT in Oklahoma! I guess bugs like it HOT because we have tons of them in our preschool garden. Pest control is on the list!
At Little Sprouts, we are working tirelessly to keep up with the bug infestations. Squash vine borers, squash bugs, cabbage looper worms, aphids, ants, and anything else you can think of are eating our stuff like a hungry band of gobbling gobblers. We are also fighting rabbits and raccoons who swoop in at night and eat stuff that’s almost ready to pick-annoying!
What to do in the Garden in July!
We do not use chemicals on our garden at Little Sprouts so we have to come up with creative ways to manage our pests. We are hand picking large bugs and tossing them in a bucket of soapy water. We are wrapping our hands in duct tape and removing scads of squash bug eggs and nymphs, and we are taking dead vines and plants out of the garden at a frantic pace.
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The heat of summer has swooped in and is burning up a lot of our plants, so we are watering whenever we can. We water early in the morning to prevent the addition of more fungus in the garden. We had over 27 inches of rain in the garden in May and June, so we have a lot of tomato blight and other fungi.
We are working on removing as much of that as we can as well. After all of that rain fell, the temperatures soared and burned up all the moisture there was available, so now we are super dry. Also, due to the heat, we need to make sure everything is mulched well so it will retain as much moisture as possible and repel as much heat as possible from the roots of our plants. To see how much water we make sure our plants get, click here.
What to plant in July
Weeding is in full swing. Grass and other weeds are popping up everywhere. We are picking it as fast as we can. We also use the boiling cooking water to keep the grass from coming in on the edges of the garden. The boiling water kills the grass instantly and helps us keep it under control. If you want to read some more ways of dealing with weeds naturally, click here. We are harvesting lots of tomatoes, green beans, a little okra and a few squashes here and there. This weekend I even found two cucumbers, FINALLY! The rabbits kept nibbling off all of our seedlings, so we planted cucumbers 5 times, and finally had to buy some bigger seedlings at the farmer’s market.
Each year presents unique challenges in the garden. Gardeners have to keep adapting and learning right along with the changing conditions. Some years are super hot, some are not. Some years have more bugs, some have fewer.
We have to keep a watchful eye on our gardens to get the maximum output from them. It’s fun and rewarding, and of course, you get yummy food! We have to work in short stints at this time of year because even first thing after breakfast, its getting super hot and muggy in the garden.
We go out as early as we can and we don’t work out for long. We try to do as much as we can in short stints so no one passes out from the heat. July is time to start thinking about a fall garden.
Summer garden tasks in zone 7
Here in Oklahoma, it’s far too hot for seeds to germinate outside, so now is the time to start planting seedlings inside and letting them get a little growth on them while the heat of the summer finishes up.
Our wish list of plants includes cauliflower, cabbage, cilantro, kale, kohlrabi, peas, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, lettuce, arugula, and some decorative kale. We hope to get some of each of those started in the next few weeks and get them ready to put out when weather permits.
I don’t know about you, but I’m really looking forward to cooler temperatures. I am very sensitive to the heat, so I have to be super careful not to get overheated. I love when the weather starts cooling down and it’s easier to enjoy the garden. August is right around the corner.
We have the hottest month to look forward to. Here’s to looking forward to winter again! I used to hate summer, but now I can’t say that because it grows so much goodness for us. It sure is a battle in my mind though. I’m dreaming of snow! Don’t forget to pin for later!
Now might be the time when you are getting a lot of excess in your garden. What do you do with all the hot peppers, tomatoes, cucumbers, greens, etc. that you can’t use? Check out the highlighted text to see.
For what to do in the garden month by month, click here.
Don’t forget to pin for later