Perennials: Purchase and plant mums early so that they look more natural in the border. Fertilize with water soluble food. Newly purchased mums can be overwintered in a cold frame or well protected with mulch. Keep up with deer repellents. The deer are becoming more active, bringing their young to the delicacies of the garden.
Annuals: Continue deadheading and feeding regularly, watering when there is meager rain. Continue to cut flowers for drying, meadow flowers, too. Design a late summer planter. Begonias, among others, can be propagated from cuttings and brought indoors.
Vegetables and fruit: Keep potato tubers covered with soil or leaves to prevent them turning green, and carrot tops and leek “necks” covered with soil. Continue planting cilantro. Monitor pumpkin and squash leaves for the eggs of squash bug and crush or remove. Continue seeding late harvest vegetables: carrots, beets, turnips, radishes.
Trees and shrubs: It is late to prune shrubs except for removing dead wood. Plant broad-leaved and needle-leaved evergreens from late August through October.
Lawns: Unusual cool wet weather has kept lawns green this year. Prepare for lawn renovation at the end of the month.
Houseplants: Shape and pinch back houseplants before bringing in to house. Check carefully for insect pests under the pots.
General: Cornell Cooperative Extension issues a monthly Horticulture Newsletter which contains useful information about vegetable and flower gardens, the pests and diseases of our area and how to control them, compost information and other timely thoughts.
— Susan Henry, master gardener with Cornell Cooperative Extension of Westchester