When summer comes, what happens with the plants in your garden? Do they wilt? Leaves turn brown? Does the grass show yellow spots?
If any of this usually happens to you, it is most likely that your garden is not well protected against high temperatures.
Excessive heat can be a challenge for our plants, as much or even more than cold. Many species (which come from tropical climates or have grown in a greenhouse) cannot withstand direct sun, and temperatures above 30 ° C cause the soil and plants to dry. And this situation will be more and more common: in Spain we are already noticing the effects of climate change, which results in longer heat waves and higher temperatures.
Protecting our plants from heat is today more important than ever. With some easy tips we can keep our garden in perfect condition throughout the summer.
Tips for your plants to resist high temperatures
Let the grass grow higher
One of the first effects of the heat is the appearing of yellow spots on the grass. The direct sun burns the leaves and dries the soil. And, unlike other plants, keeping all the grass in the shade during the day is almost impossible, unless we have a really small garden.
To solve it, we shall increase the mowing height up to five centimeters. This way, the leaves can keep more water and protect the substrate from the sunlight, preventing it from drying out.
Cover the soil with mulch
This advice applies to both the lawn and the pots, as well at the rest of the garden. A generous layer of mulch naturally insulates against extreme temperatures both in winter and summer. In addition, it helps maintaining the soil moisture.
Make groups of plants
Place several plants together to form a wet microclimate between them. Covering these groups in a partial shade and protecting the soil with mulch will help you grow your plants with less water.
Use awnings and shade meshes
If any area of your garden receives direct light for several hours a day, you can use an awning or a shade mesh. Both create a pleasant shade that prevents the leaves from burning.
For large gardens with several areas we can install a shade sail, which can be anchored to trees, walls or stakes to provide shade in specific areas (such as flower beds).
Water very early or at night
A classic advice to save water, because that way we prevent the irrigation from evaporating. But also, as with the previous point, if we water in broad daylight during the summer it is likely that the leaves will end up burning by the magnifying effect of the drops.
Fertilize in spring, not summer
Do not fertilize your plants during the warmer months. Instead, do it in spring, so that our plants can assimilate the nutrients and grow more resistant for the summer.
Wet the plants with a water spray
When temperatures rises, there is nothing like some water, right? The same happens with our plants. You can use a nebulizer on the leaves and flowers to reduce their temperature and protect them from heat.
With this method we give the plant enough moisture to keep them cool, but not enough to cause the appearance of fungi. However, remember to always do it when the sun is low. Otherwise, the drops could make a magnifying glass effect and burn the leaves.
Be really careful with pests
In a previous article we were telling you which are the most common pests in summer. With high temperatures, fungi and insects are likely to settle in our garden. If we do not prevent it, they can easily weaken our plants and make them wilt because of the heat.
Apply the intelligent design to your garden
We will never stop saying it: a well-designed garden is the best way to save water and make sure that your plants will deal with all climatic conditions (heat, cold and wind). Small tips, such as creating shady areas with bushes or tree barriers, can make a huge difference.
If you are thinking about creating your own garden or giving it a new design, in Viveros González we can help you. Ask us about our garden design service.