Paul has been working with Moon Valley Nurseries nearly 20 years and is certified by the ALCA, SLM, ISA and more. His extensive knowledge and background in horticulture makes him an industry leader.
We’re approaching the end of cooler weather and transitioning to a festive time of barbequing, pool parties, and a prime growing season for trees and plants. Now is the last opportunity to prepare your yards and be ready to take advantage of the summer growing season.
Our nursery pros have put together the best landscape tips to get your yard ready for the summer months. Take a read through our collection of advice and ensure your yard is ready to grow and look amazing all summer long!
Here is your May landscape & garden care to-do list:
- Adjust Your Watering Schedules
- Apply Mulch and Sun Protection
- Control and Prevent Weeds
- Fertilize and Supplement Nutrients
- Caring for Your Lawn
- Planting Tips for May
ADJUST YOUR WATERING SCHEDULES
When temperatures begin to rise, it's crucial that you keep an eye on how your trees, shrubs, and other plant material are responding to the heat. This will also help you notice any minor issues and fix them before they become a problem.
Always remember to use a deep watering method on your trees and shrubs so water reaches the entirety of the root system. Short and shallow watering sessions are usually ineffective, preventing water and nutrients from reaching the whole root system of your trees and plants, and resulting in a waste of water.
Long and slow watering sessions are best because it allows the water to penetrate deep into the soil. Not only does this help the tree right away, but it also helps in the long-term development of the root system, and it can make a tree less susceptible to drought.
For more information on deep watering practices, check out our watering guides to better understand how to take care of your irrigation settings.
APPLY MULCH & SUN PROTECTION
Now is a great time to ensure the sensitive trees and plants in your yard are well-equipped to stay cool through the summer. The most efficient way to keep the soil around your plants moist and cool is to apply a layer of mulch around them. Adding a few inches of mulch will help you reduce how much water you’ll need to use because the mulch keeps the roots cool and retains moisture for longer periods of time.
Additionally, certain varieties of trees are susceptible to sunburn, and almost all species of trees could benefit from some extra solar protection on their trunks, at least while they are still young. Our nursery pros recommend covering the trunk with a protective tree wrap. Younger trees are more prone to sunburn than mature specimens, so be sure to cover their trunks this month to ensure healthy trees this summer.
You can learn how to wrap your trees in this video:
CONTROL & PREVENT WEEDS
You might notice that spring weeds are beginning to die off. Unfortunately, summer weeds are just about to start popping up! The first solution to ridding your yard of weeds is to manually rip them out by the roots. Keep in mind, that as the heat of summer starts to set in, weeds multiply more rapidly to the point where it can be challenging to stay ahead of removing them.
Moon Valley Nurseries stocks many different products that can help you eliminate the weeds that are currently growing and also provide you with products to stop them from coming back.
Nobody wants to spend their summer constantly pulling weeds out of their landscape. The best form of weed control is pre-emergent. Pre-emergent solutions get a hold of the weed problem before it ever begins. Much like the name states, these herbicides stop weeds that have not yet emerged through the soil by creating a barrier around the seeds and not allowing them to germinate.
Any of our Moon Valley Nurseries locations carry all the pre-emergent products you need for your weed prevention plan. Our Nursery pros will help you pick the right ones for your yard!
FERTILZING AND NUTRIENTS
Give your landscape a much-needed boost of vitamins and nutrients before the summer is officially here. All our fertilizers are specifically crafted for our native soils. Fertilizing now sets your trees and plants up for success during the warmer summer months.
By creating strong and healthy root systems, your landscape is able to better handle adverse conditions with reduced stress from the environment. We recommend fertilizing monthly, March through October, for most trees.
We carry fertilizers for everything in your landscape, from shade trees, flowering trees, and palms to fruit and citrus.
FINALIZE LAWN TREATMENTS
We are almost fully transitioned to the season for beautiful summer grass. May is the month you want to complete any intense fertilizing on your lawn, especially if it needs nitrogen.
As the temperatures rise, nitrogen will be harder to use in high doses due to its potential burn factor. It is good to use some nitrogen-enriched fertilizer now to give your lawn a boost in growth and development that will keep it looking great through the summer.
PLANTING TIPS FOR MAY
May is a great time to plant in Arizona. With the summer growing season right around the corner, many trees and plants will take advantage of the longer days and extra sunlight to push out more growth.
Below are some of our top recommendations for the best trees to plant this month, but feel free to reach out to our nursery pros and landscape designers for further suggestions of what to plant, care advice, and design tips. You can even schedule a free landscape design consultation with one of our pros to plan out the best plants for your yard and flag out exactly where they’ll go!
The Ficus ‘Indian Laurel’ is one of the best medium to large shade trees you can find! In fact, this near-perfect tree loves to grow where there’s plenty of full sun exposure. Of course, one of its big selling features is its wide-spreading canopy, which features beautiful, lush evergreen foliage that adds beauty to any environment. We love to plant them on any landscape that could benefit from its generous shade capability. When properly placed around a home, its canopy can provide enough shade to help cool the home, which can lead to lower utility bills and a more comfortable indoor environment during those hot days.
Golden Bamboo is cold hardy, heat tolerant, and adapts well to sun and partial shade environments. One of the great things about this bamboo variety is that you don't have to live in the tropics for it to thrive. It's a small to medium bamboo species that features beautiful golden stems and thick growth, making it an attractive option for homeowners in search of a privacy hedge. In fact, it's one of the best choices for creating a lush living wall because of its fast growth and tropical appearance. The golden shoots contrast beautifully with the dark green evergreen foliage.
For more info on the best trees for privacy hedges, click here:
Syagrus romanzoffiana 'piru' x Butia capitata ‘King'
When considering all aspects that make a truly great and successful palm, the King Piru Palm exceeds all expectations. Amazingly durable, this palm thrives in soils that other palms may struggle in. Alkaline, salty, heavy clay, and even caliche-type soils are no problem for the King Piru Palm. Since this palm is sterile, you can expect very little to no litter throughout the entire year. Going one step further, this palm has the incredible ability to not only thrive in the hottest summer sun our area can bring but it’s also cold hardy in winter temperatures down to 12 degrees Fahrenheit!
To learn more incredible yard care advice, design tips, and tree knowledge, check out our library of articles! We have a massive catalog of entertaining and informative articles written by our experienced nursery professionals to help you succeed with all your landscaping goals.
Updated on April 27th, 2022 by Luke Kalawsky