June is here, and with it comes the gray days. During this time of year, we’ve got gray skies that might dampen our mood. However, the outlook is looking good for plants. If you have been thinking about planting, this is the month to do it. The overcast mornings, sunny and warm afternoons, and cool nights offer near perfect conditions for planting trees, shrubs, palms and other varieties.
When we plant our trees, shrubs, and other plants now, we are providing them with ample time to get established before the heat picks up in July, August, and September. So, let’s think of this time of the year as the perfect time to plant new trees that can turn any gray day into a pretty day!
Below are a few tips and planting recommendations from our nursery pros
Watering: Irrigate your plants at dawn and dusk. Watering when it’s colder outside is beneficial because there is less water loss from evaporation. Be sure to water deeply so that the entire root system can be saturated. The best way to ensure that the water has penetrated deep into the soil is with slow and long applications.
Mulching: A practical and easy way of keeping the soil moist all summer long is with mulch. Mulching is easy, does not cost much, and when used correctly can help keep the soil cool during the hot summer months and warm when we experience cooler days. Apply a 3 to 4-inch layer of mulch around the base of the tree.
Weeds: Keep pulling weeds and do it often. And, while yanking weeds is not fun, doing this kind of work when it’s colder outside can make it a bit more pleasant. We can use pre-emergent herbicides, and when applied, we can reduce the number of weeds that need to be pulled!
Deadhead Roses: We love our roses. Roses are beautiful, fragrant and a big part of any landscape. One of the best ways to keep roses looking good is to deadhead them. No, deadheading has nothing to do with the band or its followers. It is actually a technique that is super easy to do. Prune just below the flower and above the next set of new growth, which is a five-leaflet leaf. For best results, always make sure to cut at an angle. It’s a good idea to hose off roses in the early morning to increase humidity.
Fertilizing: The custom-blended fertilizers from Moon Valley Nurseries are specifically designed to trigger growth responses and supplement the essential micro and macronutrients that the plants need to thrive in Southern California. If you have plant material in your landscape that is recovering from any stress, we have fertilizers that can help with that.
Add Instant Color: This is an excellent time to plant colorful summer annuals such as marigolds, petunias, and more. Visit your nearest Moon Valley Nurseries location to see what we have in stock.
Problems to Look For: Some common problems to look for are gray leaf spot, blossom-end rot, lace bugs, and spider mites.
- We can control gray leaf spot by catching and removing grass clippings where it is a problem. Treat it as soon as possible with a fungicide, such as a copper spray.
- We can control blossom-end rot by adding high levels of calcium to the soil at planting time. Bone meal, oyster shell, or gypsum works well.
- Lace bugs can be controlled with beneficial insects such as lady beetles and assassin bugs. We can also use neem oil to control these bugs.
- Control spider mites by dousing them with cold water. We can also spray infested leaves with a solution of rosemary oil or a rosemary-oil pesticide.
Vegetable Garden: We can plant some edibles this month. Melons, sunflowers, and sweet potatoes are all seeds that can be planted. Plant sweet potato transplants now and be sure to water them both before and after planting.
Pruning: Sun-sensitive plants and citrus trees should NOT be pruned because this can expose them to sunburn. Encourage new growth on plants by removing faded or dead flowers. Remove any unwanted or vigorous branches from trees.
Our Expert Recommended Trees to Plant this Month
Crape Myrtle: You have probably seen neighborhoods throughout Southern California lit up with color. It’s Crape Myrtle time! Yes, these small ornamental trees are starting to bloom vibrant flowers in colors that range from white to pink and red to purple. We offer custom-grown Crape Myrtle trees that are mildew-resistant and drought tolerant. No doubt that the flowers are beautiful. Adding to its impressive features is an attractive bark and a multi-trunk structure that is begging for nighttime landscape lighting. Summertime in SoCal is fun, and the sight of flowering trees such as these is the icing on the cake. Plus, once fall rolls around, you can expect colors such as golden, orange, and red. We custom-grow the best varieties for our area, including Dynamite Red, Tuscarora, Natchez, Catawba, Muskogee, and Tuskegee.
Olive Tree: Fruiting and fruitless olive trees can bring the enchanting look of Tuscany to your landscape. Some of the world’s most beautiful gardens are in the Mediterranean region. Both types are a favorite addition to landscapes throughout Southern California. Their aesthetically pleasing appearance looks good in any landscape. Gnarled trunks and their dreamy metallic-silver foliage makes them the perfect shimmering backdrop to other plants. Plus, when the sun is in full effect, you can find some relief basking in the shade it can create. Our olive trees are custom-grown near Temecula Wine Country; not from the Central Valley. Our disease-free olive trees are ready to thrive in your landscape!
Ficus Rubiginosa: Create cooling shade with this beautiful evergreen tree that is ideal for any landscape. This beauty features glossy, green leaves and a thick, gray trunk that help to make this one of the best street trees and shade trees you can find. They can tolerate salt spray, too, so they are an excellent choice for a beach home. Their dense growth habit makes them an ideal size for smaller yards, and to block unwanted views. A specimen size tree is perfect for families. Ficus Rubiginosa features open branching, making it an excellent tree for climbing and exploring, or attaching a tire swing from one of its sturdy branches. Enjoy the SoCal summer outdoors, under a shade tree!
Piru Queen Palm: Bring the tropical look home! This tree is the classic, feather palm that is a staple in neighborhoods throughout Southern California. They add value to any size property whether planted as a focal point in the front yard or to create a tropical backyard retreat. They have a look that complements any architectural style, and since we are grown with better genetic traits, you can have a superior Queen Palm adorning your yard, creating shade and beauty to the landscape. Our exclusive Piru Queen Palms feature harder trunks and superior durability than any other Queen Palm available! Plus, we carry a total of five varieties of Queen Palms!
King Palm: If you are looking to create a tropical feel in your landscape, you can do no wrong planting a multi-trunk or single-trunk King Palm in your yard! These palms are a favorite throughout Southern California for a reason – they have beautiful dark green fronds that spread wide so that they can add a splash of tropical shade. We have a few varieties available. The Maxima King Palm creates a relaxing atmosphere, especially when planted in clusters near the swimming pool. Create an inspiring front entrance lining them up along a driveway. From the desert to the coast, King Palms are sure to bring the “wow” factor to your landscape!
We Do the Work!
Allow Moon Valley Nurseries to do all the work so that you can enjoy your summer! Our nursery pros will be glad to help you achieve your landscape goals. We have the perfect trees for the perfect spot in your yard for every season!