In the Garden: watering spikes

In-the-soil watering spikes would be best for outdoor containers to help keep evaporation at a minimum. iStock image

You know it’s summertime when your weather alert is for a heat index of 110-112 degrees rather than a storm coming. Some vegetables that you can sow directly into the ground this time of year are broccoli, beans (we’re trying the Gold Mine Sweet wax bean variety), cabbages, cauliflower, and squash.

Did you get your pumpkins planted after the Fourth of July? If not, you still have time to plant for a Halloween harvest.

WATERING SPIKES

A variety of watering spikes are available to assist in your everyday watering. Fair warning: Make sure to check the price before you fall in love with a product. Prices for watering spikes can range from $4.99 (set of 10) to $32.99 (terra cotta set of 10).

With that said, there are basically two types: in the soil and dripping onto the soil. With the heat we are experiencing now — more to come — we would recommend going with the IN-the-soil version for outside container plants. The advantage of in-the-soil dispersal is that you will maximize the amount of water the roots are able to drink.

Watering spikes with the nice adjustable drips ONTO the soil are good for indoor plants. If you have a slow, continuous drip for your outside containers, a large portion of the water will evaporate, resulting in thirsty plants.

ROCKS IN YOUR GARDEN

Do you have a section of garden around your house where nothing will grow? For decoration, Colonel Klaus of Cassie recommends either river rocks or egg rocks. As Colonel suggests, you can simply blow the leaves off the rocks without getting soil or mulch on your sidewalk. Thank you, Colonel. Great idea. Saves time and energy and looks great.

BEAVERS AND CROWS

Beavers and crows are all around our area. What do they have in common, you might ask? They both mate for life.

Beavers at the tender age of 2 years old move away from their parents to look for a spouse. Some couples in the wild have been known to enjoy 20 years together.

Crows also “leave the nest” at 2 years. They hang out with their parents, enjoying the company of siblings and cousins, until they meet that special crow.

FOOTSTEPS AND HAMMOCKS

Are you taking advantage of this hot heat to trim your trees? Here are a couple of fun suggestions.

First, we know we shouldn’t cut limbs flush with the tree. You want to cut at an angle so the water (it will rain again) runs off. How about when you’re cutting, leave them long enough to use as handholds to climb. Or, cut them at just the right length to use when hanging a hammock. Ahhh, laying in a hammock under the shade of a tree!

So, although you might be trimming off suckers or branches that like to knock off your hat, you can end up with a tree of many purposes.

Till next time. Keep your souls and soles in your garden!

Remember the True Master Gardener: Jesus said, “I am the vine; my Father is the Gardener.” John 15:1

“In the Garden” is written by father-daughter duo Bill and Martelle Luedecke and Bill Luedecke. Contact Martelle at 512-769-3179 or luedeckephotography@gmail.com. Contact Bill at 512-577-1463 or bill@texasland.net.

Find more “In the Garden” columns in the Lawn & Garden Guide.

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