Thursday, August 30th, 2018

Our Gardens: Help Your Garden Beat the Heat!

While most plants enjoy a certain amount of sun, very few can tolerate high temperatures for too long without extra help. Vegetables will wilt quickly, and crops like lettuce may bolt and end up tasting bitter. As that summer heat wave rolls on, here are a few things you can do to protect your garden:

1. Don’t water during the heat of the day.

A deep watering in the morning or evening will guarantee that water gets down to the roots of your plants and doesn’t simply evaporate off the soil surface.

2. Try an automated timer.

Automated timers for sprinklers and hoses are ideal for watering late at night or while you’re away on holidays. Try a simple-to-use water timer that attaches to your faucet or garden hose, no batteries needed.

3. Give vegetables an extra drink when it’s extra hot.

Keep a close eye on annuals and vegetables for wilting – when temperatures really soar, these plants may need an extra bit of water to help them through the day. If that is the case, use your watering can to water close to the roots, and avoid splashing water on the leaves.

4. Soaker hoses will save water and money.

Obviously, watering is essential if you want your garden to thrive in heat, but all that moisture can come at a cost. A soaker hose can save from 30-70% water usage!

5. Rain water is best – collect it with a rain barrel!

Rain water is soft, pure, aerated, the perfect temperature, and free! Catch it with a rain barrel that can be attached right to your hose for easy watering.

6. Fertilize regularly for strong roots that take up water.

Watering with a fertilizer like Myke at regular intervals will encourage root growth. Deeper, stronger roots mean plants can take up more water and better stand against those long, hot summer days.

7. Keep moisture in soil with mulch or landscape fabric.

The best garden mulches are wood and bark chips, because they absorb moisture, as opposed to rock or stone. Soaking thick layers of newspaper can also work as a temporary water-retaining mulch while you’re on holidays! Mulches and fabrics will also help to keep weeds at bay, and will protect plants from damage during the winter.  

8. Plant some shade!

If you need to plant shade-loving plants in a sunny garden, you can try blocking them with leafy, sun-loving plants. If you really finding it tough to keep up with watering during the summer, take a long-term strategy and plant a shade tree in a strategic location to help you out.

Talk to our experts for advice on types of trees and how and where to plant for the best results, or use our Plant Finder tool to dig up the best options for your garden.

Be proactive for a healthy garden, all summer long!

Wednesday, August 1st, 2018

Outdoor Living: Lawn Mowing Tips and Tricks

A soft, inviting lawn is one of our favourite parts of summer – great for kids, fun for your dog, and a perfect place to lay down a blanket and have a picnic or just read a book. Plus, a well-kept lawn really ratchets up the curb appeal of your home! With that in mind, here are a few of our professional mowing dos and don’ts, to help you achieve the lawn of your dreams.

Blades and bags:

  • Do: Have your lawn mower blades sharpened before the mowing season begins and check them once a month. Sharp blades make a clean cut, while dull blades make ragged cuts that don’t heal well.
  • Don’t: Use a bag to collect grass clippings. The clippings actually feed and fertilize your lawn as they break down.

Lawn length:

  • Do: Cut your lawn “high.” Grass should be trimmed only to about three inches. That little bit of length helps limit weed growth, reduces the need for watering, and promotes strong root structure.
  • Don’t: Buzz-cut an overgrown lawn to “get back on schedule.” Instead, cut the grass back in increments, never by more than a third of its current length.

The right time to mow:

  • Do: Take any chemical, weather, or moisture changes into consideration before deciding to mow, rather than following a strict schedule.
  • Don’t: Cut your lawn obsessively. Like any plant, grass needs time to recover after being cut. Plus, excessive use will only wear out your mower.
  • Don’t: Mow your lawn when it’s wet. This causes damage to both your mower blades and your grass.

Extra nutrients make extra green and healthy grass:

  • Do: Try an iron supplement! Get the greenest lawn on the block by applying this Iron Chelate.   
  • Don’t: Bag your leaves in fall. Mowing or mulching leaves into your grass will provide your lawn with a good source of nitrogen, encouraging healthy growth come spring.  

These really simple adjustments to your mowing habits can make such a big difference that’s it’s worth it think twice before you fire up the mower! Plus, a well-kept lawn will be a less-enticing place for deer to bed down, and that means less risk of your trees and garden being eaten – see more here.

And of course, there’s that fresh-cut grass smell – enjoy!  

Hours of Inspiration

Monday – Wednesday 9am-5pm
Thursday & Friday 9am-6pm
Saturday 9am-5pm
Sunday 12pm-5pm

Shelmerdine Garden Centre Ltd.

7800 Roblin Boulevard
Headingley, MB R4H 1B6

Phone: 204.895.7203
Fax: 204.895.4372
Email: info@shelmerdine.com