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While you’re away…Make sure your garden enjoys your vacation

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Summer is here, and that means vacations! Now that you’ve got the plane tickets, hotel reservations and the dog in the kennel, you’re ready to go, right?

Wait a minute … have you thought about how your garden will fare while you’re gone? If not, you’d better make a few other arrangements before you leave.

Hire – You can pay a garden sitter who will come in once or twice a week to tend to the watering and other garden chores. Better yet, get together with friends and neighbors to trade garden sitting – you take care of their garden when they go on vacation, and they take care of yours.

Mulch – Hopefully when you set your bulbs and plants in the ground, you topped them with a thick layer of mulch. Not only will mulching help prevent weeds and keep the soil cooler, it has the ability to retain moisture so you don’t have to water as often. If you didn’t mulch at planting time, you should definitely do it before you take off on your vacation.

Drip – One of the easiest ways for your plants to thrive in your absence is with a drip irrigation system and a timer to regulate it. It doesn’t have to be elaborate, just effective. There are simple-to-use kits with easy instructions for setting it up. You can get down to the basics with jut a timer and a hose with a sprinkler.

Self-Watering – For shorter getaways, these may be enough. You can buy water globes to put in your containers, which let water drip out. Or you can make your own with plastic milk or soda bottles – make pinholes in the bottom and bury them in the soil, then fill with water. The pinholes will allow the water to seep out slowly. You can also use sponges or newspaper strips to soak up the water and release it slowly over time.

Pest Check – A few days before you leave, check your plants for any pest problems. Insect and fungus problems can quickly get out of hand, so taking steps to eliminate them before you go will ensure you don’t find a major infestation when you return.

If you follow these few simple suggestions, your vacation will be a carefree time away, and you’ll return to a garden that looks just as fabulous as you left it.

 

About Mary Pat

Mary Pat has written 23 post in this blog.

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July 23, 2013
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