5 Ways to Help Your Plants Chill Out in The Summer

Written by: Raquel Zaragoza

As the temperature begins to rise during the summer months, it’s not just us humans who feel the heat – our plants do too! While we’re all excited about the warm weather and sunshine, our plants might not be so thrilled. 

High temperatures and intense sunlight can cause all sorts of problems for our leafy friends, from wilting and drooping to sunburn and dehydration. But fear not, fellow plant parents! With a few simple steps, you can help your plants beat the heat and thrive all summer long. 

In this article, we’ll share 5 expert tips for keeping your plants cool, hydrated, and healthy during even the hottest of days. 

1. Water Your Plants Wisely

Just like us, plants need a good amount of water to survive. But, in the summer, it’s important to water them at the right time and in the right way. 

Watering them in the morning or evening is best as most of the water will evaporate if you do it later in the day. Aim to deep water 2-3 times a week. Deep watering involves water soaking at least 8 inches into the oil, giving plants the structure to survive any lack of water. Save time by using a drip irrigation system or a soaker hose. 

Alternatively, without these tools, watering by hand is completely fine when done in the cool hours of the morning or evening. However, it’s important to fight the urge to overwater your plants. Overwatering can lead to root rot and fungal disease.

2. Catch Rainwater

Rainwater is a great source of water for your plants, and it’s free! Plus, it’s better for your plants than tap water because it doesn’t contain any additives or chemicals. 

To catch rainwater, you can use a rain barrel or simply place a bucket or container under your downspout. You can then use this water to deep water your plants, just be sure to use it within a few days to avoid any stagnant water. One of the The Secret Benefits of Using Rainwater is that it unlocks nutrients in the soil!

3. Keep it Cool and Moist by Adding Mulch

Mulch is a great way to keep your plants cool and moist during the summer. It helps insulate the plant from both the heat and the cold, and keeps the temperature of the soil low. 

For extreme temperatures, it’s best to aim for about 4 to 6 inches of mulch. You can use organic materials like leaves, grass clippings, or wood chips. 

Mulching also helps prevent weeds from growing, saving you time and effort in the long run!

4. Clean your Containers

When plants are stressed in the summer, they can become more prone to pests and diseases, diseases that can carry on into the next season. Whatever pot you plant in, it’s best to clean them out between plants. 

For ceramic and plastic pots, scrubbing and soaking with a simple water and vinegar solution should do the trick! Aim for 1 cup of vinegar to 4 cups of water ratio and follow up by cleaning with dish soap and water! For glass pots, hot and soapy water is just what you need to give them a thorough clean. For terracotta pots, bake them at 225F for an hour and allow them to cool before using. This will help kill any bacteria or pests that may be lurking in the soil.

5. Manage Sun Exposure

Just like us, plants can get sunburned too. Providing shade for your plants during the hottest parts of the day can help prevent heat stress. You can use shade cloth, umbrellas, or even move your plants to a shadier spot. 

Just be sure not to block too much light as plants still need sunlight to grow. You can also create shade in your garden any way you can! A great idea is strategically planting under trees that provide natural shade.

BONUS TIP! Choose Heat Tolerant Plants

If you’re looking to add some new plants to your garden this summer, consider choosing heat-tolerant varieties. These plants are better equipped to handle the heat and sun exposure, making them less likely to wilt or die. 

Some heat-tolerant plants include caladium, sunstar pentas, whirlwind scaevola, sweet carolines, hardy hibiscus, salvias, coneflowers, lavender, eggplant, and okra. They not only look beautiful but can also be a great addition to your summer garden. 

That being said, the Smart Plant & Tree Care app has so many useful pieces of information about your plants, a free plant care calendar, and helps with identification of pests, weeds, and diseases! Download to help your garden thrive in any season.

Taking the proper precautions to help your plants chill out in the summer is crucial to their survival. 

Watering them smartly, catching rainwater, adding mulch, cleaning your containers, managing sun exposure, and choosing heat-tolerant plants are all great ways to help your plants thrive during the hottest months of the year. 

So, get creative and have fun with your summer gardening!

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