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7 Things You Should Do In Your Garden Right Now

Late Summer Gardening

Despite the recent heat wave here in Utah, summer is definitely on its way out. (Where has the time gone?!) I did quite a bit of planting, pruning, and general gardening earlier this summer, so for the past several weeks we’ve been able to sit back and enjoy the fruits of all that labor.

Late Summer Gardening

As I’ve started doing some maintenance on my flowering shrubs and perennials, I’ve been thinking of other late summer projects I need to get around to. So today I thought I’d share some late summer gardening tips that will help keep your garden looking great throughout the fall!

Late Summer Gardening

7 Gardening Tips For Late Summer

1. Water, Water, And More Water

Even in the late summer, the heat can take a toll on your plants. Most plants need a deep watering once a week, around 1 inch if you’re going by a rain gauge. It’s best to give the plants more water at once, rather than from several smaller waterings because it helps the plants to develop a deeper, stronger root system.

Late Summer Gardening

2. Hold Off On Fertilizer

Late summer is not a great time to fertilize, generally speaking. Most plants are already suffering from heat stress or drought conditions, and fertilizer won’t help in these conditions. In fact, applying fertilizer to plants weakened by heat and drought could burn the roots or foliage. To be safe, focus on giving your plants the water they need, hold off on the fertilizer till later in the fall.

Late Summer Gardening

3. Cut Back & Tidy Up

If your perennials have brown or wilting sections, late summer can be a good time to prune them away. After pruning, give your perennials extra water to encourage new growth. But don’t get discouraged if your plant doesn’t bounce back right away. At the very least, pruning your plants back in the late summer or fall will pay dividends next spring!

Late Summer Gardening

For your more flower-y plants, you can “deadhead” them to tidy up the look of your yard or garden. Deadheading is simply the act of removing dead or wilting blooms from the plant. But you may want to keep in mind that deadheading your plants could discourage birds from visiting your yard!

Late Summer Gardening

4. Add More Mulch

This is a good time of year to inspect the mulch layer around your plants and in your walkways. You want at least a couple of inches of mulch for the layer to be effective at protecting against erosion and heat. If your mulch layer has dwindled over the past few months, now is a good time to get it back up to scratch.

Late Summer Gardening

5. Attack Weeds

If your garden is starting to look a bit scraggly or crowded, you could probably benefit from a good, long weeding session. Removing weeds not only improves the look of your garden, but it can also be beneficial to your perennials since they won’t have to compete with weeds for water or light.

Of course, temperatures can still get quite high in the afternoons this time of year, so it’s a good idea to plan your weeding session for the early morning or late evening.  And before you spend all day weeding by hand, give this homemade weed killer a try. (Bonus Tip: I always find that weeding goes a lot faster when I’m listening to some good tunes!)

Late Summer Gardening

6. Save What You Can

Utilize every last bit of your bounty by taking the time now to save what you can from your garden. Capitalize on successful plants by saving their seeds to sow next season, and harvest ripe vegetables or fruits for canning or jam-making. You can also harvest and dry your leftover herbs to use in your cooking through the rest of the year.

7. Plant For Fall

If you live in a climate that supports fall gardening, now is the time to get started. As the days get cooler, crops like kale, lettuce, arugula, mustard greens, and spinach will thrive, and you’ll be able to harvest before the snow hits.

Those of you who live in hardier zones that stay warm longer can also add beets, radishes, broccoli, and cabbage to your fall garden. (Find out more about that here.) But even if you can’t get more vegetables in the ground, you can consider planting a cover crop to keep your soil loose, prevent weeds, and restore nutrients to the soil.

Do you have any late summer gardening tips you would add to this list?

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Homekeeping Tips

  • Hi Jillee! I read your column daily and appreciate all of your good advice and tips. Thank you for the end of summer gardening tips. Due to our very hot days here in Nebraska my garden is a mess! Your article gave incentive to get busy! I admire your Endless Summer hydrangeas I have had one of these for several years now but it doesn’t bloom. Maybe next year??

  • Nothing is more relaxing than spending the late afternoon snipping. It tidies up the beds so nicely. There’s no stress involved….just snipping and daydreaming. Some may consider snipping and weeding an endless chore, but I never have. I’d rather be outside in my flowers than any other place in the world. I love reading your articles.

  • In late summer, I identify the perennials I plan to divide in early fall. This year I’ll be giving away many lovely day lilies, hostas, Black-eyed Susans, ferns, and hydrangeas!
    I love to pass along plants to friends and neighbors.

  • I enjoyed the article about ways to help your garden look good in late summer. I am going to deadhead my zinnia, in order to look better and produce better next spring. Thank you.

  • I’ve been edging and mulching foundation plantings. It makes such a difference in keeping them neat and tidy, and most of all, weed-free. Late summer is good for this activity because it sets you up for easy planting in the spring. Also, getting those gorgeous mums and setting them up in areas with pumpkins and scarecrows to accent your property with rich colors, gives new life where tired summer blooms are fading away. (Love reading your blog. Keep it coming!)

  • I love the ideas and tips. I went out and pulled weeds and bought some new plants to put in my flower bed where it was lacking plantings. I bought plants best for fall planting and got my garden started for next year.

  • Enjoying the end of summer and the beginning of fall means adding mums to the garden. I’m using white mums for the first time and plan to get orange mums when the white ones fade. I’ll be adding pumpkins and ornamental kale, too. Thanks for the tips. I went right out and watered!

  • Great post! Just what some of us –like me– need to convince us to get our gardening gloves back on for a serious fall cleanup! The weather is sunny and crisp today and makes you feel like it’s fun to get back outside and enjoy our gardens !

  • We are having a very cold, wet fall in Montana. I want to be out weeding and tidying up for winter but it is just too cold to be out there. Of course, after all of our fires we aren’t complaining too loudly about the weather now. I would love to grow hydrangeas but I’m afraid we are too north for them. Thank you for all of your posts, I have learned so much for you.

  • Good Morning, Loved Looking at your website on how to do with your Handy tips on my Flower Beds.was Struggling on keeping my Flowers from dying and Hoping to make it better for their growth and blooming.Keep giving your tips out Love to see the beauty of yours to give me faith in mine.

  • I love to enjoy the late summer by sitting on my back deck and enjoying the birds singing and smelling the fresh cut grass and see all my mums bloom (that are like bushes now). So beautiful with the changing of the seasons.


    KC MO

  • Late summer for us means hummingbirds! In coastal Alabama we are on the migratory flight pattern and we really enjoy watching their antics. The red hibiscus flowers in our courtyard bring them in and our feeders keep them coming back!

  • I am in the process of getting my new home yard fixed up and love the tips. I enjoy sitting out side and watching the animals getting ready for fall, and seeing turkeys and deer in my yard.

  • The geese start flying in larger gaggles and it is so amazing to me to watch them in flight. Their honking is loud enough that I hear them in advance of their flight over our home and I go out every chance I can to watch them.

  • I fill the bird feeders and bird baths so I can enjoy watching the birds coming into my yard!! Seeing different birds and listening to different bird calls are favorite things to do in our yard!

  • My favorite way to enjoy the end of summer is loving the up coming seasons and knowing I will love my summer garden all over again next year.

  • We love spending the end of summer out on our patio with cocktails, candles and a nice crackling fire. Talking about how the kids are growing up so fast and how this summer just blew by. All while enjoying our hydrangeas and other flowers. Thanks for this post and all your other great ones!

  • My favorite way to enjoy the late summer season is to sit on my glider in the back yard and watch the young grand kids playing (I’m usually coaxed into joining them). While I’m at it, I begin to plan what I might add to the yard as the cooler temps arrive. Thanks for all the helpful information you provide to us out here in computer land

  • I have been looking for a long blooming plant. On the East Coast our weather change change from Hot to cool and back again during the summer months. The Endless Summer Hydrangea sounds perfect.

  • Hydrangeas are one of my favorites too. Our family entrance porch has hydrangeas on both sides of walkway. It feels awesome to walk through, like a wonderland ! The big blooms are gorgeous in the house and last soooo long. Such a treat late in season.

  • Late summer is one of my favorite times of the year, it begins to cool in the evening, and stays cool longer in the morning. It enables me to spend even more time in my screened in back porch listening to and watching the birds, squirrels, butterflies and bees. I’ve also found we have more hummingbirds in the cooler weather. I’m honestly not much of a gardener, I’ve had eleven back surgeries and don’t do much besides sit and take it all in! I am interested in beginning a hydroponic garden on my kitchen window sill. I just saw one the other day that looked very doable in my available space. I have to say that I only recently discovered OGT by Jillee and I absolutely love her site.

  • My favorite is watching the butterflies from my kitchen window. My back flower garden got ahead of me this summer and is in need of weeding badly, however I think I will let it go a little wild so I can continue to enjoy the butterflies.

  • Thanks for the tips, especially when to fertilize and weed. I’m moving to a house in Georgia in December and the landscaping may need a little work. I’m more of a container/gardener, but the house has ground around it and I want to plant bushes and flowering plants. I adore Hydrangeas and hope to plant at least 3.

  • We just moved to our “Forever Home” at the end of June, and it’s on the side of a mountain. The former owners did nothing to even maintain the acreage, much less prevent it from turning into pure chaos, but fortunately I actually *really* enjoy weeding! In the mornings, I go through my email on the front porch while thinking about what to attack next (and reading my daily dose of Jillee, of course!) and just enjoying the birds and hummingbirds who come to the feeder on the deck and the porch. After living in the city for far too many years, it’s rather difficult to pinpoint my favorite activities here; it feels like ALL of it is my favorite!!!

  • I appreciate the tips, I am currently rehabbing my new yard, back and front. It’s been a long haul, I’m low on resources so it’s DIY all the way! I’ve just recently rescued some hydrangea cuttings for my font yard, any tips on how to successfully root and plant them?

  • I planted hydrangeas with crepe myrtles behind them! Plant different varieties of hydrangeas every year. My favorite flower! I dry the blooms and spray them silver or gold to use in holiday decorations.

  • I love sitting outside in the cooler evenings of late summer and catching up on my reading, either with a good book or a magazine that just came in the mail.


  • I love enjoying all of the fresh herbs from my garden all summer long. I’ll know winter’s here when I have to move my basil plant inside – hope I can keep it alive until next spring! Our phlox plants are my favorite flowers to look at in the yard and the smell is wonderful!

  • I take pictures of the best of my garden now so I can enjoy them through the long winter months in Wisconsin. I also send them to my Walgreens photo app for a 101 year old great aunt who lives in a nursing home. She puts them up in her room.
    ‘One more thing,’ I take pictures of plants my friends and family gave me to show how they turned out this growing season.

  • Jillee, I enjoy your posts and have tried many of your fun DIYs. My favorite part of summer gardening has been my 4 raised beds of flowers. I planted numerous packs of “pollinator flowers” to go along with my foxgloves, columbines, sunflowers, and peonies and they were just fabulous. But my favorites this year were the varieties of zinnias that I started from a seed packet. I never knew how beautiful they are. I have enjoyed giving bouquets to my friends as well as having them in my house. I’ll be thankful when the heat of summer is gone though, even if it will take my beautiful flowers with it!

  • I enjoyed your post I live in Kentucky and keeping my flowers, trees and bushes looking good has been hard this year . We went from rain all the time to none. Some survived our vacation when they didn,t get watered. We enjoy sitting on our front porch watching squirrels, birds, chipmunks and looking at our flowers. This is one of the best things I enjoy about summer.

  • I planted zinnias this year and they have thrived, The butterflies are gorgeous. There are SO Many, different sizes and colors. They have been a joy to watch. I have LOTS of sun around our yard. So, I also tried Sunpatiens. They have also done quite well. I have a love of all plants which I got from my parents who worked in their yard and flowers all the time. I enjoy all your tips on ONE GOOD THING. I get so many great ideas. Keep the tips coming.

  • I’m new to Wyoming mountain gardening having come from California, so I am learning what may grow and what won’t survive the cold and snow of winter as well as the heat and wind of summer…and let’s not even talk about the heavy and rocky clay soil. I am determined to get trees to grow as well as some flowers and my small vegetable garden. Watering every day allows me to evaluate my progress in a relaxed manner as well as to plan. It is my favorite time in the garden. I have been told that I must remember to deeply water my newly-planted trees once a month all through the winter as the snow is so dry it just doesn’t give the ground enough moisture to keep the trees and shrubs alive until Spring. Not looking forward to figuring out how to water and not freeze to death myself, but definitely looking forward to a beautiful yard.

  • I planted Endless Bloom Hydrangeas in huge pots on my front porch! We live in Upper Michigan so each winter we put them in the garage to let them go dormant, and bring them out in her spring. They are absolutely beautiful and it’s saved me so much money not having to purchase annuals every spring. Plus they are shade loving and my front doesn’t get any sun so it’s the perfect solution.

    • Glad to hear Endless Bloom hydrangeas thrive in upper Michigan where I also live. I’m a still consider myself a novice hydrangea planter . . . didn’t know they could be wintered in the garage. Thanks for the advice!

  • I love to sit on my back deck and enjoy my rose garden and the smell of my flowers. Watching how the birds, bees and butterflies also enjoy my flowers. The new families of rabbits running through the yard looking for clovers and grasses to eat. Loving life.

  • I love sitting on my porch swing at the end of the day, watching my dogs play. I can see my flowers blooming and smell some of my fragrant herbs. Time to enjoy my garden!

  • Thanks for this and all of your articles! I find many of them interesting and very informative!

    What is the beautiful pink flower shown in this article? I’d love to plant those. How strikingly beautiful!

  • This summer has been the absolute best and worst . . . we moved to our 1 1/2 acre land last year and immediately put in an herb and vegetable garden and also lots of flowers and flowering shrubs. Two months after we moved I was laid off. While my husband is the hardest working person I know (he poured the foundation of our 720 sq ft home and cleared the land) I am the breadwinner. Living further away from the city has it’s challenges, no jobs close to us. I am now recovering from knee replacement surgery and anticipating surgery for the other knee. But in the meantime our gardens and flowers have exploded. It’s been a blessing with enormous serenity rewards. Star filled skies with the frogs singing (loudly) and deer spying at us. Our dog Blue keeps them at bay. Every day I’m a little stronger so we are working at pruning and getting the fall garden in. Well, I don’t have a job but I know it’s temporary. I look around and I really have come to rely on my faith to carry us through. It amazes me how much we have been able to grow in our garden. Thank you so much for your blog.

  • I love early mornings and late evenings on our front porch. Birds, bees, and butterflies entertain us in the mornings; crickets, frogs, and owls serenade us in the evenings.

  • After a day of yardwork, our family grills and prepares a meal together. We finish the evening with a trip to the drive-through ice cream store where we each enjoy I favorite frozen treats.

  • Thank you for the very helpful information you provide us with! I live in one of the most beautiful places in the world…….the mountains of western N. C. The weather is delightful and my flowers always look srunning! I enjoy sitting on our porsch and waiting for the chorus of numerous birds who seem to gather back to their nests to exchange the gossip of the day. Then, as darkness falls, the lightning bugs begin to appear. They light up the tress with a beautiful twinkle that we only get in the summer! I wish everyone could have such a peaceful way to end their day in these troubled times!

  • Here in AZ, we’re waiting for the cooler temps that come with fall. But, we’ve had a good monsoon season this year and it has been nice sitting outside in the breeze and noticing how much greener everything is!

  • The late summer sunsets are the best! Each night we track the time, knowing the days are getting shorter, and the nights are a little cooler.

  • I live in the panhandle of Texas where the summers are hot and dry with winters being cold, windy, and often below freezing temperatures. Due to dry heat, tropical type flowers never even make it thru the summer months sometimes, so my biggest surprise has been been how beautiful and tropical-looking hardy hibiscus grow, especially the Modern Marvel hibiscus! I work in my yard quite a bit and almost without fail each day, a car will stop and ask what kind of shrubs they are as they are so pretty and prolific. They bloom continually until frost, and then die back with the stalks being cut back to ground level about mid-March. It has to get pretty warm before they begin pushing up in late spring or early summer, but when I see the first little “heads”poking up, my heart rejoices as I know soon I will have all 8 different kinds of them blooming with 6-10 inch blooms covering each plant.

  • I am located in the Piedmont Region of North Carolina. I like to walk around my yard and enjoy the early mornings and check out what’s growing on in my yard. I am particularly fond of my hydrangeas. I have an Oak Leaf hydrangea with blooms that get darker as the summer progresses. I would like to try an Endless Summer Hydrangea too.

  • My late summer thing to do is sit on my porch and Watch the butterflies hummingbird come to get the last of my flowers I get sad because it’s coming to the end of summer and my plants start to dry up…..

  • My favorite thing to do…sitting on my back porch in the evening taking in those smells and noises of late summer! Late summer is just different and it often brings back wonderful childhood memories!!!

  • My Endless Summer hydrangea has bloomed well in it’s second year. I love to dry the flower while they still have color. During the heat I prepare for school in the fall.

  • Jillee,
    I love your daily posts! This time of summer is wonderful. We are enjoying our bountiful garden. Fresh veggies couldn’t get better!!

  • Thankyou, Jillee, for these gardening tips, and all the tips you provide every day! I look forward each day to see what you going to be talking about. My hydrangea plant doubled in size this year and has been blooming for several weeks, beautiful big white puff balls!

  • This is my first summer as am “empty nester” & I’m enjoying spending my mornings reading, my afternoons going for walks & my evenings eating the bounty from our garden. We planted lots of veggies this year & have been reaping great rewards! Thanks for your gardening tips, they’ve been a help.

  • I love to sit outside in my backyard in the early morning hours with a cup of coffee and listen to the birdsong (without the noise of lawnmowers and leaf blowers) and enjoy the view of my flower and vegetable gardens with everything in full bloom.

  • Endless summer hydrangeas are such a lovely plant. I really like working with them; however, I LOVE the beautiful blooms they produce. They stay gorgeous for a really long time. I bought 35 of them at one time. They went on sale and I got all of them,
    They are in the angel garden. I just love to walk through all of the flower gardens this time of year with a glass of mint tea. (there are 15 gardens all connected with pathways and benches for resting.

  • Thank you for all your great advice! I love this time of year. Living in Minnesota our winters are very long and have to enjoy as much as we can of our nice weather! I love to sit or walk around my back yard and pull weeds/trim my flowers!

  • I love sitting on my back deck watching the hummingbirds feast on my flowers. The Japanese Beetles seemed to have either died or gone on their merry way! Thank heaven!

  • When do you trim your hydrangeas back or do you? I’ve heard conflicting ways to do it. My hydrangeas did not have one flower on them this year. I’ve had them for about 5 years. They have been having less blooms the last couple of years. I was wondering if it had to do with the way I am trimming them back. Please advise. I love to enjoy the beautiful flowers they produce. They are full of green leaves with no flowers.

    Debi in Missouri

  • It’s a wonderful time to admire all of the flowers blooming and thinking of what additions/changes to make to the flower beds for next year. It’s a wonderful time of the year when all of your hard work pays off.

  • I love watching the birds and admiring my flowers because they seem to become more vibrant in the late summer. Great time to look at the beauty of God’s creation.

  • I love sitting on my front porch after filling the bird feeders and watching the birds, squirrels, rabbits, and chipmunks in the yard. It’s a regular Disney movie!

  • Thanks for all your gardening help and tips, Jillee. I love gardening, always have. I love having repainted my house to match the colors I have on the inside, throughout. You’d be surprised how easy it is to take decor from room to room or swap out pictures around the house to hang somewhere else. I call it “shopping my house first” before going out to retail. Of course, there’s lots of recycling, re-making and diy going on too! Thanks again …………..e

  • I finally have my yard and garden on the road to completion here in Western Kentucky. We built our house about 3 years ago so it is a pleasure to walk in the yard with my morning coffee and look at my nice mulched beds and blooming flowers.

  • Late summer is when the temperature finally starts heading toward being comforatble. I enjoy it by figuring out what plants I can get cutting from to start new plants for next spring.


  • My favorite fall gardening activity is to divide and replant my perennials. I especially enjoy sharing my divisions with friends and neighbors.

  • I planted zinnias this year for the first time, in honor of my mother. She planted them in her front garden in Ogden, across the street from the School for the Deaf, who often came to visit for a snack or Family Home Evening.
    They are almost in full bloom right now and remind me of her.

  • Thanks for the reminder to prune. I am “programmed” to do this in fall and spring, but I have much to do tomorrow! My favorite thing this time of year is weeding to keep the beds looking great while summer winds down and we return to crazy schedules!

  • Late summer is rather nice here in mid-Missouri. We had the triple digit weather a few weeks ago and are now enjoying the unexpected cooler weather. I love this cool down because I feel I can breathe again and there’s a spark to my walk. The garden is so much easier to work when the morning sun arrives a little later and the cool evening temperatures are still lingering. The first ripe tomato was picked just this week. Apparently there were two ripe ones, but by the time I got to the plant, only one remained. Hopefully some little creature received its vitamins from my labor.

  • I enjoy the end of summer by relaxing early in September when the kiddos go back to school. I enjoy my second cup of coffee on the deck or patio after the kids have gone to school and use these days to strip down the beds and wash all the pillows and pads and hang them outside one more time to dry in the breeze. I save my favorite seeds from the garden and put up some tomatoes and other plentiful fruits and veggies for that fresh garden taste during those long winter months.

  • I planted hydrangea this spring too! Love the blue petals. It was doing great for a couple of months, but now it has gotten limp and the blooms have turned brown. Too much rain and watering maybe? I will take your advice and hope they come back strong next year. Thanks Jillee! Karen

  • thank you for the post I’m always interested in any gardening tips it’s been very hot in Oregon and we had a late start with virtually no spring so I’m hoping that this good weather will move into late October which will give me time to utilize your tips and weed and Mulch and enjoy the fruits of my labor

  • jillee, now I am getting back out to attack weeds. Thanks for the tip….no fertilizer….too! In Georgia it seems to be getting a wee bit less torrid, thank goodness.

  • Here in Hemet, CA it’s been over 100 degrees almost everyday since May! Therefore, I am spending this late summer in the house most of the time! When it’s already over 80 degrees at 7:00 a.m., there’s no time when it’s cool enough to work outside!

  • Jille, this is such an inspiration! I really need to get out in our yard and conquer the weeds.. and the kudzu! Thanks for the post! It clearly took a lot of work!

  • I love seeing my plants and flowers in bloom watching the humming birds taking time to visit the front and back yard flowers. Also my feeders. We have a bucket that we keep filled with freshwater for the deer and wild life and food. My husband set on the front porch listening to the birds and watching the bunnies and the baby deer that are present with their mother deer. My husband and I been cutting cedar trees away to let the fruit trees have room to grow and get sun light. We enjoy hand watering the trees and cleaning up out side to make the areas around pool tidy and eye catching with different colors of flowers and relaxing and enjoyable .and fun for all.

  • I like to water and day dream and take out frustration on weeds and brambles or jut sit and enjoy nature which triumphs over gardeners like me.

  • I live in Georgia where you have to pressure water wash annually because of the humidity, tons of pollen, and everything else that accumulates and sticks. Usually people, like myself, pressure wash late spring to early summer to clean up the house, playhouse, deck and patio, walkways and pathways, and retaining garden walls in the yard. However, I also like to do a quick pressure wash on all the garden pathways and walkways, and on all the garden retaining walls comes late summer to early fall. It’s like a spa for my garden as it clears the dullness of anything not organic and puts a contrast and lift to the color of the plants in my yard. It also prepares the garden for the humid winter here and there’s less gunk comes the following year in late spring to early summer wash.

    • By the way, I also have a lot of hydrangeas. Not sure if people already know this, but the color of hydrangea flowers is dependent on the ph of your soil. If you want to make your hydrangea flowers pinkish then you’d want to add lime (that you can get in your nearby home and garden center) to the soil. Some people put it or amend it to the soil early fall, and some early spring, so that it is releases into the soil once the plant is getting ready to flower in late spring to early summer. That’s what I started doing last year in the fall. Otherwise, without lime, I just have beautiful bright blue hydrangea flowers.

  • Do you have any suggestions for keeping flower beds weed free without all hand weeding? I love a beautiful yard with lots of beautiful flowers but I can’t keep the weeds at Bay.

  • I love everything about summer. My plants, beautiful flowers and all the birds in my backyard. I love watching them and caring for them all. My 3 grandchildren who live with us enjoy helping me and we all love playing in the pool, especially a fun game we call American ninja warrior pool style!! My husband and I have 15 grandchildren and will spend a couple of weeks in our RV visiting them and having some time with just the 2 of us doing a lot of hiking in the mountains!!

  • I live in Missouri where it can be hot and humid in the summertime.Our garden is finally producing tomatoes. One of the things my brothers kids loved to do a few years ago when they came in the Summer was to go help Grandpa (my dad) in the garden.

  • I choose to deadhead and do garden clean-up either early morning or later in the evening after the temperature has cooled down. Just being outside to enjoy the garden is terrific. We are still having some lighting bugs so when dusk comes around it is still magical with the flickering lights.

  • I love to take my dog for a long leisurely walk in my neighbourhood in the cooler part of the evening, getting inspiration from everyone’s gardens along the way. Then I come home & water, water, water! LOL!

  • I like to spend my evenings looking at my yard decorated with solar lights on my bushes. My neighbors say it looks like a miniature city. The critters like birds some time tear my wires on them. So I have to get my husband to fix them. I’m always looking for deals on color miniature solar lights. When I go to bed and can’t sleep,I look out at my lights. It calms me down.

  • I live on the Mississippi Gulf Coast where it is hot and humid in the summer. We have a 60′ glassed in porch with floor to ceiling windows on 3 sides and I like to sit and watch the rabbits, squirrels, turtles, fox, raccoons and birds all summer it is like being outdoors with air conditioning. i have flowering shrubs and all around the yard and It is beautiful in spring and summer. I love it.

  • My favorite thing to do is prune & water my flowers either early morning or early evening when it’s not the hottest as I live in the south (Florida).

  • Um, your hydrangeas are beautiful! Canvas worthy. In a following pic, was that echinacea and chamomile? I can’t get my herbs to grow. From seed, I can’t transition the dampening stage. I tend to kill most of what I buy in a pot. I make a lot of cleaning and bath products, but my thumb is opposite of green (red?) and I buy stuff from a greenhouse nearby that has the all natural no chemical plants…kind of expensive. Any tips for that? Would I be better off with indoor lamp lit herb garden? My lavender bush dies as I speak….

  • Well, if you’re measuring by temp and humidity, it is certainly not late summer in central Mississippi; however, when it comes I plan to enjoy sitting on the back porch with a lemonade, enjoy the remainder of blooms, and watch the birds at our feeders! I also got a new Endless Summer Hydrangea this year and I am delighted with the pink blooms!

  • We just moved, and I have a whole new skill sets learn in our new zone. I have enjoyed the many birds and insects chirping and buzzing at night.

  • Thank you for your helpful tips, Jillee.
    I enjoy drinking my morning coffee on the porch as I watch the birds, especially the goldfinches, flit among the coneflowers.

  • I enjoy the birds, butterflies, and the occasional visit from Jerry the neighborhood groundhog, although he isn’t much for hanging out with friends. Flowers are so beautiful this time of year.

  • Well here in Florida, it’s always summer! But right now it’s in the 90’s by 11 am every day, so I’m enjoying the last of summer by cranking the AC down to 72 and hiding like a vampire inside. Most of my plants are on the lanai to keep them from spontaneously bursting into flames or alternately, being drowned in our torrential summer “tropical storms” that we get. My pomegranates are about to be ready to be picked, so I’m also enjoying the last of summer by looking out the windows as often as possible to watch the birds, squirrels, abundant butterfly population, and the “fruits” of my labor.

  • I enjoy going outside first thing in the morning before it gets super HOT! (we live in the Central Valley of California) with my freshly-brewed cup of coffee, my little furry friend, Ami (cutest kitty ever) and my Bible. I read God’s Word as I listen to the world waking up – I especially love to hear the birds singing in our trees. I am blessed – Life is good! <3

  • I love sitting on the patio, feeling whatever breezes waft thru with my husband (we’re retired) and reading a good book or knitting with a cup of tea…. as long as the light permits….and then just counting my blessings.

  • I’m enjoying the succession of blooms from the plants I’ve chosen and loving my browned out lawn–water conservation. Meanwhile the roses are rewarding my watering with another gorgeous burst of bloom.

  • I love the end of summer. We have such a short growing season in Western Washington, so by now the garden is in full production mode. I love entertaining friends and neighbors. And, both of my kids have birthdays to celebrate before going back to school.

  • I have down sized do like it because hubby had a stroke but I do miss the flower garden, when I walk through town I see a lot of flowers I had to leave behind

  • I am constantly deadheading but have fallen behind in my front garden this summer. I do t feel so bad now after reading tip #3! Thanks.

    In late summer I try to make sure we really enjoy our back yard and pool and use as much as possible before the cooler weather sets in. I also try to attend some local events in our city!

  • I just received 3 small Hydrangea plants to plant. Not sure the kind they are. Thought I’d plant and next year maybe I’d know which type they are and maybe change their location if need be to do that. Love my flowers.

  • My hydreanga are 65 yrs b old. Beautiful green leaves no flowers last year and this year. Tryed cutting them down to low sticks then not trim at all. Fertilizer this year nothing going on. I’m on Long Island New York help

  • Here in South Louisiana in August we focus on staying cool! Even so, I love to get up early right at sunrise and go for a walk. The birds are just starting to sing, dew is still on all the plants, and there’s a fresh newness to the start of the day. It is a wonderful time to get in a walk and an appreciation for God’s creation.

  • Living in the gulf coast area means 9 months of summer and 3 months of fall/spring like weather but not much of what I consider to be winter weather. I truly enjoy putting in some mushroom dirt or a layer of leaf mulch that I have accumulated during the mowing season on my flower beds in late summer; so the soil is rich/loose in February/March for those early cold weather blooms such as hyacinth, daffodils. I also have a bed of hydrangeas on the north side of my home which require little care other than to cut back in early fall so they have lots of blooms come June. Watering is helpful but they seem to do well with minimal watering. I would love some hints on how to care for my wisteria as it seems I have to cut it back all thru the summer to keep it controlled but that causes it not to have may blooms come early spring. My late summer is spent hauling grandsons back and forth to school for band practice and every night after school starts until football season is over. Therefore, October is my late summer leisure time and I must say I truly enjoying getting outside walking the dog or pulling weeds (therapy for me); and coming up with my “winter” plan for the cleaning of our 4 acre yard once the cooler weather comes in. My favorite thing to do beginning in August is to have my hummingbird feeders out as the hummers head back down south; we usually will have a yard full of hummingbirds well into October and they keep us quite entertained with their constant fighting over the feeders and dive bombing one another.

  • Living “deep in the heart of Texas,” I enjoy that the end of summer ushers in the beginning of fall and her beautiful glory, mainly mums for my yard. It reminds me that new beginnings can also be beautiful…just in a different way than before.

  • Thank you so much for the heads up on Hydrangeas. I got a beautiful blooming pot several years ago and have not gotten them to bloom again after trans planting them to my garden. Your tip on the water, is the answer I am sure, because it has been unusually heavy rains this summer for the past 3-4 mos. and I got a few blooms on them! I love to relax and cook (that reads as a oxymoron) for my adult kids and their kids when we get together. Throw in games that cause the competitive nature and laughter to flow and you have a perfect summer day. Btw, we have seven children and seventeen grand kids.

  • I do love my flowers. They really struggle with my sandy soil. So have to do a lot of watering. My hydrangea arson beautiful. They went through 3 years of 1 or flowers. Love all your helpful ideas. Keep them coming.

  • I so love the last part of summer, it gets a little cooler and my flowers and yard seem to be at rest. I am still cutting some flowers, we always use them at our women’s conference in August. They make beautiful centerpieces. I am drying some hydrangeas and limelights. As they are drying I so enjoy them on our back deck.

  • Love these helpful tips -working outside is so therapeutic ! Some of my pots look so tired so it’s time to refresh and renew them. Always on the lookout for perennials that will work in the south with all this heat!

  • What I love about late summer is that the flowers you dead head will provide the seed needed to expand the flowers into our uncultivated pasture… Daisy, scabosia and echinacea scattered into the tall grasses on our evening walk will make for next year’s wildflowers!

  • Thanks for the great tips. I am an avid gardener in Florida where the heat and humidity is great for some plant and not for others. I agree deep watering is helpful here turning the soil helps freshen things up also so the water can penetrate.

  • I love hydrangeas! Ours are doing great this year-we live in Washington on the East side of the mountains and it is in the 100’s this week but they are somewhat shaded and love the space. Thanks for all the information to help with caring for our flowers! Appreciate it.

  • We just moved into a 116 year old school house in the country. It was my dad’s house so there’s a lot of work! I started the flower beds in May and my rose has already bloomed and the sunflowers will bloom soon. We have a hummingbird visitor and Monarch butterflies have come to visit. Lovely!

  • Now that we have two beautiful gardens going full bloom, I love to sit on my covered porch with my puppy, a beverage, watching the dragonflies enjoying the fruits of our labor, and the birds and chipmunks having a snack at my first ever, birdfeeder! The hummingbirds are happy with their new feeder too. What an old fashioned way to spend a summer’s day. Ahhhhhh.

  • I just like to sit outside as the sun goes down and it finally cools down a little! They have been doing construction on the street I live on all summer but late in the evening they quit and no one can drive on our street so it is so calm & quiet – I love it!

  • I enjoy doing a second planting of vegetables, for example more lettuce or more peas that can be ready in mid-fall. I enjoy staggering the planting of sunflowers and other types of flowers so that I have some bright fall blooms. Then I set out on the front porch and enjoy it all, including watching birds come to our bird feeder and to the sunflower heads to eat.

  • Thanks for all the great tips! It’s late summer in Ontario and I know my garden could use some TLC. I love this time of year and like to relax outside and enjoy the summer evenings. Thanks!

  • Love my endless summer hydrangeas…they don’t bloom every year though, which is disappointing. I dry them when they become papery to the touch. I strip the leaves and place them to dry in the side rails of a crib in the garage…they keep their shape and dry beautifully. I use the dried hydrangea to decorate my Christmas tree alone with artificial berries and pine cones…WOW!

    I get to enjoy them year round!

  • I just love to sit out on the patio in the evenings after the sunset and the air begins to cool, listening to the frogs and bugs. We just purchased our house just about a year ago and haven’t done too much to the landscaping as we were wanting to find out what was already planted. We have some lovely plans for new plants in some of the beds. I love being surrounded by flowers and trees.

  • Hi Jillee,

    Thank you for offering such great prizes. My favorite time is sitting on my deck and enjoying quite, when I have my tea and breakfast before I go to work. I love to entertain. When the weather cooperates we spend a lot of time entertaining on the deck and having family dinners. So those string lights would be a nice added addition to the atmosphere.

    Have a blessed summer.
    Debi from Missouri

    • Hi Jillee

      I so look forward to being enlightened by your daily posts. They have given me quite a bit of guidance. Thank you for thinking of your readers by offering a few gifts.

      Enjoy the rest of your summer and thanks for the Pandora suggestion!
      Teri from Tucson

  • I too, am enjoying my hydrangea right now. It recently bloomed for the first time. I love to watch for the beginnings of fall (my favorite season) at this time of the year. We have sumacs that are already starting to turn and an abundance of butterflies. I don’t remember seeing so many butterflies!

    • I have hydrangeas also. However they have not bloomed at all this year. Every year before this year they bloomed less and less. I looked up on the internet of how when to trim but all the instructions were different; trim don’t trim. So when and how do you trim yours to have them be full of flowers. Mine are very full as far as greenery but no flowers. I have had them for about 5 years. I need all the advice I can get. I love them when they bloom.

  • I had a small patch dirt in my backyard ..so I decided to try my hand at raising strawberries! I planted two small cartons I found at my favorite nursery…it has been two years now, and my strawberries are all over the place! They are not huge, but they are so sweet and juicy…and they continue to produce! I put them in salads, eat them as snacks, and give them to neighbors! What fun they,turned out to be!

  • My favorite time is in the evening in the late summer. There is something magical about the lighting at that time of day and year. Luckily here in Southern California it is not horribly hot or humid and the evenings cool off. Usually on Saturdays after we have done some yard work, we love to sit out on our patio and enjoy our backyard while eating dinner.

    I love hydrangeas and enjoy the information on them. Perhaps next I will have some! Thanks for all of your tips throughout the year.

  • I have limelight hydrangeas and absolutely love them! I like to spend my last few days of summer finishing up on gardening work and gearing up for another school year.

    • I replied to another reader that had hydrangeas of when and how to trim to have good blooms for the next year. My hydrangeas did not have any flowers this year. Very bushy and healthy green but no flowers. Any advice is welcomed.

      Debi in Missouri

  • In late summer, I like to enjoy my flowers and harvest my herbs. I dry them and grind them for winter use. In western Michigan, it’s pretty dry in July and August so I spend a lot of time watering.

  • I am in the DEEP South, so we are in the dog days of summer! Water, water & more water is a must down here. However, we have had a good bit of rain which has helped. I saw a comment about tomatoes and I have to agree, they are wonderful this time of year. My new favorite for the abundant zucchini is stuffed with spinach, heavy cream, sun-dried tomatoes and a few real bacon bits…yum!

  • We made the mistake of putting in a bed in July. The plants did not fair well, and half of them died. We’ve had some good rain over the last week, so my favorite thing to do in my garden is watch the plants rally!

  • This is when I take great pleasure in making plans for moving (and removing!) plants around. My Vermont gardens seem to be at their peak density right now and I make detailed notes for the actions to take in fall or next spring that will improve plant combinations and overall bloom sequence. I note locations of volunteer seedlings that have matured to a good size for transplanting or simply yank them now if they are unwelcome! One summer I invested in a roll of copper foil and wrote out each plant’s name with a ballpoint pen on rectangles I cut out using a paper cutter. I also noted the date of planting wherever possible. These tags were loosely wired on to shrubs and to stakes next to perennials. Because even tho I am a landscape designer, I sometimes forget the names of exact varieties or of unusual plants.

    Jillee, these are all great suggestions. However in the first photo it appears as tho you are watering the plants from above, splashing water on the the flowers and leaves – and it could just be the camera angle. Gardeners should always water at the soil level especially in the blast of summer sun – water drops can act like little lenses focusing the sun’s rays on petals and leaves – creating heat stress. THe best time to water is late in the day when the water will sink into the soil and get to the roots. Water earlier in the day and much will evaporate.

  • We too planted hydrangeas ~40~ this year. They will be a wonderful addition to my floral design business as well as enhancing the areas around the new venue we are developing! GO Endless Summer! Our humidity causes leaf spot problems here in the South, so I am not surprised that your hydrangeas are doing well in your arid climate. It is obvious that you understand the need for watering/care, so you should have years of enjoyment to look forward to.

    Would love the items you are giving away~again, wonderful additions to the business!

    Take care and continue on~love the emails from your site!

  • I love playing in the yard with the kids, blowing bubbles, and enjoying some alone time (maybe with a cocktail) on the patio with my husband once the kids go to bed.

  • I love sitting out in my yard when it’s cooler watching the birds at my feeders. It’s a great way to relax! Thanks for these tips; I’ll definitely be putting them into practice this summer.

  • One great thing about living in Florida is the endless summer. The planting season changes, but does not end. So there is always something to do in the yard/garden. I do enjoy sitting on the back porch to watch the birds and butterflies in the garden.

  • I love late summer and the promises of fall with the new blooms that come from my plants as the heat dwindles. Also love to see the pumpkins starting to form and take color in my garden.

  • Our garden finally looks the way we always hoped it would. It’s a joy to keep it in good shape. Now, there is nothing better than sitting there with a good book and a glass glass of iced tea.

  • In early summer I take a picture of my freshly planted garden spaces. Now I’ll enjoy taking new pics to compare the garden’s growth, space planning and overall plant coordination with each other. So rewarding!

  • I just planted 3 different hydrangeas. Water, water and more more! I love to listen to an audio book while I’m watering and weeding. I actually look forward to digging in! Thanks for all the great tips!!

  • My favorite part of the late summer is relaxing outside and enjoying all the fruits of my labor from my garden. I take it all in to last me for the winter months when I have very little left.

  • My garden right outside my door boasts of tomato, cherry tomato, green beans, zucchini and cucumber plants. I love walking on my stepping stones I put down thru the garden to see what is ripe and ready for picking for breakfast or dinner! That makes my day!

  • My favorite thing about late summer is garden ripe tomatoes! In the northern part of the midwest, full size tomatoes don’t really get ripe until August. I look forward to this time all year around.

  • My fav way to enjoy the late summer is relaxing in my shady backyard garden sipping a cool ice tea. I enjoy hand-watering the area first to refresh the plants and cool down the area.

  • This astounded me! I cut bowls of gorgeous hydrangeas for a party over three weeks ago, and now they look just like they did when I cut them. I have never had this happen and I have no idea what magic I did to cause it. I have huge blooms and small blooms, pinks, blues, purples, and white. The blooms have dried and seem like they are a permanent decoration in my home.
    Let’s hear the trumpets and a drum roll!

  • Hi from Texas! I enjoy sitting on my porch and looking at the green bees and pink, orange and yellow purslane. I planted milkweed for the butterflies which has been fun too! Thank you for your great ideas.

  • We just purchased a house in a small town & im looking forward to the sounds of nature instead of the sounds of the city! Feeding the birds again will be great & a backyard bonfire!!

  • Enjoying the fruits of my labor. Just beginning to gather bouquets and harvest the vegetables. I live in Maine where the growing season long, but the harvesting season is short. I enjoy your blog posts!

  • I enjoy sitting on my porch with my favorite beverage and watching the sun setting. It is so peaceful and reflecting on the day that is passing. God makes such beautiful sunsets along with my beautiful roses in my flowerbeds.

  • Visiting the flower beds and boxes with morning coffee in hand, celebrating every new bloom, songbirds and ocean waves, bright sun and fresh sea breezes.

  • I have two Endless Summer hydrangeas and they are so beautiful! Want to plant more. We live in Erie and spend many if our summer days at the beach. Beautiful scenery!

  • Thank you for all the reminders. Love seeing them in the format that you used, a
    checklist so to speak. A gentle nudge,
    much needed and appreciated
    this time of year.

  • Thanks for the great tips. I enjoy all the birds in the morning and evening that come to the bird feeders in our garden. We plant sunflowers for them. The long shadows in the late afternoon provide such beautiful light for enjoying the garden just before sunset.

  • Although I am an ‘early bird’ by nature, I just looooove working in my garden very early in the morning when all you can hear are the mallards hooting off on the lake still covered with the morning dew and the slow waking up of the sun as birds’ choirs gather up to sing their morning happiness (yeah, I know, its sounds mellow…) ! Sounds like a postcard I know, but that’s what I see and wake up to every morning. An ‘Aaaaaah’ moment…

  • My favorite way of enjoying the end of summer is sitting on the deck, looking at the flower beds and with a big smile on my face and a bouquet of flowers on the table next to me, with my feet up and a drink in my hand watching the sunset.

  • Thanks for the info! I especially appreciate the reminder to hold off on fertilizing. Walking with my dog to the songs of crickets and frogs on a warm, still, late summer evening feels like heaven on earth!

  • My favorite summer flower is the hydrangea! Their blooms are very large. I enjoy cutting them and putting them in a vase on the dining table so we can all enjoy them!

  • My absolute favorite thing this time of year is walking through the garden in the early morning with a cup of coffee and admiring all the hard work! I make a mental note of where to weed, where to deadhead, etc…I do a little every day so it’s not such a huge task at once…

  • Still enjoying the fruits of my Spring planting, harvesting tomatoes and a bumper crop of red and green bell peppers this year. also enjoying the flowers, zinnias and marigolds that are presently blooming.

  • This time of year I’m in my vegetable garden picking what’s ready to come off the vines. If I know my 4 year old granddaughter is coming over I wait for her because she loves gardening with me (and loves picking and eating the grape tomatoes right off the vine:)

  • Thanks for the tips! Love hydrangeas, they are so beautiful and easy to care for! I’ve lost track but I think I have 16 of them now, 6 of which are endless summer. I will definitely be signing up for the text message reminders!

  • I try to pull all “stray weeds” and of course cutting flowers for the house. My husband has a green green thumb has the deck covered with flowers in pots and of course a bird feeder to enjoy the birds especially the humming birds. Thanks for your great tips keep up the great work.

  • I savor the sunshine, the flowers and the extra long days. I recently planted some endless summer hydrangeas in my yard, and just signed up for the text tips. Thanks!!!

  • Thanks for the tips. My husband and I take great pride in our yard. No grass for us! Lots of trees and shrubs. This is the time of year when we get out with the sunrise. Too hot and steamy later.

  • After a weeding & deadheading session in my garden, I like nothing better than to cool off with a big glass of ice water while I sit in the shade on my patio listening to one of my gently babbling water features.

  • Thank you for the great tips I am so working on trying to have a beautiful garden but have so many trees around us and not a lot of sun! We have a few hrs of sun in the back yard! I follow on you on pinterest and receive your emails daily what great tips and ideas Thank you again and God bless

  • I enjoy sitting outside in the evening when it is starting to cool off and looking at all the beautiful flowers that are blooming. This is when I start thinking about how we should change things up a bit or add some more next year! I really like your “rusty” flower Jillee!

  • I don’t know a summer that I have enjoyed my garden more. All the heavy preen and mulch I applied has really paid off. I faithfully apply bloom booster once a week and my flowers are beautiful this year. It has been fun to enjoy the ever changing large flower garden out front. The compliments from the neighbors are so nice too as they are enjoying the flowers too!

  • I just moved from Seattle to Libby MT. So far my favorite thing to do is sit out back in the evenings and enjoy the peace and quiet. There are deer everywhere, such a beautiful world we live in.

  • The humidity lightened this week in South Carolina and I have enjoyed several days of weeding, mulching and cleaning out my flower beds. The only opposition has been from my bees and a particularly unhappy praying mantis who did not appreciate my intrusive gardening .

  • I love how lush my flower garden are and seeing all the blooms that I so lovingly tendered during the spring and early summer. My veggie garden is now going strong and I’m picking tomatos and peppers already.

  • My husband is taking the kids camping this weekend, and I am truly looking forward to playing in my yard all day Saturday! Playing= weeding, reclaiming scraggly beds from grass, possibly even trimming hedges if I get ambitious. :)

  • I love relaxing on the deck listening to the local animals and birds. Just around dinner time the cows at a nearby farm start mooing. I love where I live!

  • I really just started gardening this year so I’m not really sure how to do it well or what to plant. Reading your posts have helped a great deal. I love the peace I get from gardeNing and the end results are worth it, even though there’s not to much to look at yet, but next year will be even better.

  • We are having more rain than usual and everything is lush and green. My garden is doing exceptionally well. We planted lots of flowers for our daughter’s wedding bouquets. So eager to see how that all works out!

  • I love sitting watching all the birds that frequent our yard at our feeders and bird baths. Picking ripe fresh veggies is also a great way to spend late summer days.

  • My favorite summertime thing to do is sit out on our deck under the awning when it is raining. The sound of the rain hitting the canvas awning and the fragrance of fresh rain is completely relaxing. In August it is the way to enjoy the last few weeks of summer sitting in the midst of it all.

  • Your hydrangeas are beautiful. I was so lucky that my new home had well-established mop heads, which I love and the traditional kind. I have enjoyed adding to the plantings with many perennials, I am going for the beachy, eclectic look for my little house at the shore. I look forward to your email every day, and have coffee with you every morning.

  • Being recently retired, I am pretty new to all this gardening, but loving it so far. I am learning from you and love reading your stuff. I like you, am a Cali girl transplanted in Texas instead of Utah. I unfortunately have a lot of clay in my dirt and haven’t figured out all the plants that may like that except so far Hibiscus and Roses. I would love to try Hydrangeas. Well I know for sure that what ever grows here I will have hummingbirds, they love my porch in the late Summer.

  • I have planted Sweetpeas for the first time and now I am enjoying their beautiful scent. I cut a small handful to have indoors.
    I had a beautiful cat called Sweet pea and these delicate remind me of her!

  • This is the best year in my garden. I love to watch the many butterflies, dragonflies and hummingbirds on a lazy afternoon. I have a 1/4 acre pond and have turtles, frogs and fish enjoying the day as well. This is my zen place.

  • We just moved into our new home and we love it! Although unpacking and placing my favorite things ( they have been in storage for over a year) has been fun, my true love is the garden. My thoughts are I can unpack during the cold months of winter here in southern Ohio. All I want to do is be outside and work with my plants so they may get a good start for the long years I plan to live here. I worked with the landscaping company on details of placement of the bushes and flowering plants and so far it has been paying off. My favorite so far has been the hydrangeas and the meadow sage lavender colored blooms. My new water bill will be off the charts but my garden is all ready benefitting from the extra water and attention. I am already planning for next year!

  • Ha! Not this year–since the June wedding of our daughter we have hardly done a thing, it’s taken awhile to transition from wedding mode back to normal life. We managed to replace two knockout roses with two hydrangeas. Other than that I’ve been enjoying nature from the porch. Next year we will get back into digging in the dirt!

  • I love going through my gardens and start gathering seed and cuttings for next year’s plants. Also a good time to plan next year’s garden based on what did well and what did not this year.