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Keeping Stressed Plants Alive During the Summer

During the extreme heat of summer, plants can become stressed. Plant stress can be identified by wilted leaves, discoloration and increased pest problems. While there is no single solution to keep stressed plants alive during the summer, there are some steps you can take to help them survive until conditions improve. 

Managing Stressed Plants

  • Focus your effort and money on what is truly important- I’m not going to tell you not to water your lawn, but if you have to choose between keeping the lawn pretty and keeping your fresh veggies growing or your shade trees alive, choose wisely!
  • Water your trees- Large, established shade trees are impossible to replace. They add value to your property as well as save money and preserve fuels by lessening the sun’s heat effect on your home. During times of severe drought, even older trees can become stressed so use drip irrigation to water them deeply if conditions are very dry.
  • Water the garden at night- Generally speaking, this is a gardening no-no. We are told to water during the day, which is wise advice when you are trying to avoid powdery mildew. During severe heat and drought, consider watering at night to allow water extra time to sink into the soil without evaporation.
  • Postpone changes- When our plants are stressed do not move or adjust them in any way. This is not the season to divide plants or to plant anything new. Even fertilizing can be postponed during this time because we do not want to try to force our plants into new growth while they are stressed.

The best advice I have to offer is this: Just try to keep it alive. Keeping stressed plants alive during the summer is a challenge but it is not impossible.

How do you deal with stressed plants?


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