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Gloves and Garden Trowel

May Garden Tasks

Trowel and gloves on grass

May Garden Tasks

Get ready for warm summer temperatures as spring flies by. Our May garden care tips help keep everything in good shape with protection from sun and heat damage, advice on yellow leaves, and answers to defeat unwelcome pests in your garden.
Hands holding mulch

Summer Heat

Summer sun and heat is on the way, so protecting new trees is important. Their canopies might not be big enough to shield young trunks from strong sun. Our garden gurus recommend tree-safe paint to protect from sunburn and boring insects. No special equipment is required—simply start a few inches above the soil line and paint any part of the tree trunk or branch open to sun damage.

To keep all plants healthy, spread mulch. Begin about six inches away from the trunk and spread out past the canopy or drip edge, apply a layer deep enough to stop the sun from getting through to the soil. The soil stays cool, maintains irrigation, and suppresses weeds.

With paint and mulch, your trees and shrubs will be stronger against insects and disease.
Soils & Mulch
Zucchini plant with diseased leaves

Yellow Leaves

Yellow leaves can have many causes, with fertilizer or water being main possibilities. Check your fertilizer instructions to see if it is time to get a good meal going. Double check on your watering system, and be
sure water is at the drip edge of the plant. If the water is just near the trunk, the thirsty roots at the drip edge can’t reach it.

But a closer look at that yellow leaf could tell you there is a micronutrient deficiency. If you have an acid-loving or citrus plant, leaves that are yellow but have green veins, could be asking for iron, zinc or manganese. Chelated iron corrects iron deficiencies. GreenAll® F.S.T. adds sulfur and corrects iron, zinc and manganese.
GreenAll® Chelated Iron
Fly on leaf

Party Crashers

Mosquitoes, wasps, ants, and flies might need an eviction
notice this month. Lures and traps work very well, without harming beneficial insects, us, or our pets. Just be sure to place the trap far away from the picnic table! Otherwise we are inviting those guys to hang out where we are. For ants, bait stations are more effective than sprays.
With bait stations, ants take bites of bait home to share with the whole
colony. For mosquitoes, keep an eye out for standing water and use Summit® Mosquito Bits® or Mosquito Dunks® for long-lasting, safe results.
Summit® Mosquito Bits®

Other Tasks For May

  • Watch for aphids on your tender new plant growth. Spray them off with the hose and use Bonide® Neem Oil or Monterey Take Down, if needed.
  • Protect your fruit trees from birds with netting.
  • If you are planting herbs that easily bolt (flower before harvest) in the heat, plant new seeds each month so you have a continual supply of fresh herbs.
  • To reduce rose diseases, increase air flow by selectively pruning out the smallest rose stems. If using sprinklers to water, water early in the day so the rose is dry at night.
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