The heat is on, but vine-ripened tomatoes make it all worthwhile.
And, as hard as it is to believe, it’s now time to start seeding fall vegetables indoors. The seedlings love a cool basement, under the lights and away from the searing heat, destructive bugs, and malicious animals.
Seed fall crops of Asian greens,beets, buckthorn plantain, broccoli, broccoli raab, cabbage, cauliflower, claytonia, collards, escarole, endive, fennel, kale, kohlrabi, lettuce, mache, mustard, scallions, spinach, and Swiss chard.
IN THE HERB GARDEN
Direct seed more chervil, cilantro, dill, and summer savory.
IN THE VEGETABLE GARDEN
Direct seed more bush beans, beets, carrots, and scallions. Make another planting of cucumbers, summer squash, and zucchini. Continue to pinch out tomato side shoots and tie up to stakes. Pinch out the tips of pole beans and cucumbers when they reach the top of their support, to increase side shoots. Lightly spray greenhouse tomatoes, eggplants, and peppers with water to improve fruit-set. Hill up leeks. Harvest and cure garlic onions, and shallots. Side-dress vegetable plants with fertilizer. Foliar feed weekly with fish and seaweed emulsion or compost tea.
IN THE FLOWER GARDEN
Direct seed more zinnias for late-season harvest.
Plant perennials found on sale. Water deeply and mulch to keep roots cool.
Deadhead flowers. Cut back lavender. Tie up climbers. Cut back perennials for regrowth. Divide bearded iris after flowering. Prune wisteria.
Feed container plants weekly and keep well watered.
IN THE ORCHARD
Keep small fruits well watered.
Cut out spent canes of summer-fruiting raspberries, leaving 8 to 10 canes per every 3 feet of row. Burn canes to prevent disease.
Pinch back next years black raspberry canes.
Early tomatoes, baby leeks, potatoes, beans, beets, squash, zucchini, onions, garlic, shallots, Swiss chard, blueberries, raspberries, mulberries, blackberries, elderberries, gooseberries, currants, herbs, and flowers. Look for staghorn sumac along roadsides and harvest a few heads, once they turn deep red.