- Compost kitchen scraps, leaves, and yard waste to increase your own supply of organic matter.
- Train vining vegetables (pole beans, squash, and cucumbers) up a trellis, obelisk, or netting between poles.
- Plant perky annuals such as alyssum, gaillardia, gazania, and lobelia -- they’ll last until summer.
- Fertilize your lawn properly, but wait until the lawn shows signs of consistent top growth.
- Remove dead fronds from palm trees. Feed with a slow-release 8-2-12 plus magnesium palm fertilizer.
- Harvest the last of cool-season edibles such as spinach, lettuce, and radishes.
- Plant bulbs of Amazon, crinum, and blood lilies as well as varieties of caladiums, calla, and canna.
- Replenish decomposed mulch in planting beds with new pine bark or melaleuca chips.
- Monitor the garden for increased pests as nighttime temperatures warm. Use an organic insecticidal soap for soft-bodied pest such as aphids, thrips, spider mites, and mealy bugs.
- Identify troublesome weeds such as skunkvine (Paederia foetida) and partridge pea (Cassia fasciculata). Your local extension office can offer control options.
- Mow the lawn frequently but keep the blade at its highest level. Save grass clippings to add to compost.
- Replace tropical plants such as bananas and colocasias that haven’t recovered from winter damage.
- Apply iron to a yellowing lawn to green it up mid-summer. Nitrogen fertilizers are prohibited in most areas to protect waterways.
- Make cuttings of pentas, coleus, begonias, and plectranthus. Cut 4 to 6 inches and place cuttings in small containers of vermiculite and/or potting mix. Keep them misted daily. Transplants will be ready for the garden in a few weeks.
- Replace heat-weary annuals with colorful salvia, gaillardia, or vinca.
- Give palms with yellowing older growth an application of magnesium sulfate.
- Pinch back coleus and other blooming annuals to promote fullness and longevity into late autumn.
- Assess lawns for fungal issues and treat -- this is especially important during the summer rainy season.
- Plant warm-season vegetables -- green beans, pole beans, and peppers still have time to produce before winter.
- Add heat-tolerant herbs to containers and edible spaces: try rosemary, oregano, and mints.
- Monitor your lawn closely for persistent insects such as sod webworms and chinch bugs.
- Divide and transplant perennials and bulbs if growing too large or rejuvenation is needed.
- Fertilize shrubs and ornamentals. Use a slow or time-released fertilizer for the last time until spring.
- Sow seeds. Plant winter crops directly in the ground: broccoli, collards, cabbage, lettuce, and radish.
- Plant bulbs for spring blooms such as lilies, agapanthus, zephyranthes, and amaryllis.
- Inspect poinsettias. These leafy plants can be quickly defoliated by hornworms. Handpick these munching pests and drop in a cup of soapy water.
- Increase fall color. Add mass plantings of cool-season pansies, petunias, lavender, and snapdragons as focal points in beds and containers.
- Plant trees and shrubs in the fall -- the perfect time -- so they can establish their roots before the hot, dry spring weather.
- Plant vegetables. Sow in succession for extended crop time: try carrots, lettuce, spinach, and greens.
- Test your soil. Prepare for new spring plantings by knowing what amendments to add.
- Enjoy herbs. The cooler, dryer weather provides relief to herbs that appreciate it, such as basil, cilantro, dill, and fennel.