Get It Growing: Summer Color Remains

BATON ROUGE, LA - Information provided by LSUAgCenter

During this hottest time of summer, large numbers of people don't typically flock to plant nurseries.

On this edition of Get It Growing, LSU AgCenter horticulturist Dan Gill explains that now is an ideal time to go to your nursery to select flowers that will add great color to your landscape – colors that can last until October.

This intensely hot time of the year, you might think that gardening pretty much shuts down. And I've got to admit, when it's this uncomfortable outside, we don't like to get out and garden as much as we do when the weather is cooler and milder. But we continue to garden through the summer.

In particular, if you're looking around your landscape right now and you'd like to add some color to your landscape – maybe you have a flower bed where some of the flowers have already played out and finished and you've pulled them out; some insect or disease problem might have wiped out a planting and you're craving to put some more color back in that spot; or perhaps you've watched a TV show on gardening or looked at a magazine and seen the beautiful containers of flowering plants just bubbling over with beautiful colors to embellish your patios, porches and decks. That's all doable this time of the year.

Your local nursery is full of wonderful, bright, colorful bedding plants that thrive and love the heat. You can plant them in beds this time of the year. You can plant them in containers this time of the year. So I encourage you to think about going out to your nursery. You know, in midsummer when it's this hot, a lot of gardeners just kind of stay away from the nurseries.

When you come to a nursery this time of the year and look at the beautiful color, ask questions. The staff is there, anxious to have customers come in and to help them. So ask questions. I'd like something for a shady spot, something for a container, something that gets to be three feet tall in a bed. Explain to them the growing conditions, the purpose for the plant and what your taste is. And let them help you select wonderful, beautiful bedding plants that you can plant here in midsummer for color all the way until October.

For more information on other lawn and garden topics, contact your parish's LSU AgCenter Extension Service office or visit the LSU AgCenter website at and click on the "Lawn and Garden" button.