The temperatures are high, the days long and the rains scarce. If we want to preserve the work done so far it is necessary to irrigate frequently, even every day for the most sensitive crops. In particular, we never leave courgettes, peppers, aubergines and celery without water. We distribute in the morning or evening, but always waiting for the soil to cool down: we will avoid evaporation, the establishment of pathogens and damage from thermal shock.
Some vegetables, however, benefit from the suspension, especially when the fruit has reached a good size and is about to ripen. These include melon, watermelon, pumpkin and some types of tomatoes: excess water interferes with the accumulation of sugars and therefore with the intensity of the final taste.
Of course, weeds must always be removed by hand or with a gentle hoe. Vegetable mulching can help us to reduce the number of interventions and will keep the roots of the vegetables fresh. At the same time, we check the stability of the supports: the abundance of fruit, perhaps heavy, can put them to the test, especially during the violent summer storms.
We continue to top off the plants that have reached their final height. The same operation on melons, pumpkins, cucumbers and watermelons favours the production of secondary and tertiary stems and female flowers. We proceed with the bleaching of celery and leeks and salads.
Tomatoes, peppers and aubergines ripen better if well exposed to the sun: to facilitate the process we eliminate the leaves that cover them. In the southern regions, however, too much heat can cause burns: in this case we use special shading sheets.
- August is perhaps the most profitable month of the year, especially if we have a wide range of fruit trees on our plot. Apples and pears, apricots, peaches, small fruits, cilie… will be available.
Sowing and transplanting
We must sow and plant vegetables that allow us to have good harvests until late autumn. Sowing, to be done outdoors, is the prerogative only of people who do not leave home: to obtain good germination it is important to keep the soil moist at all times. An excellent choice are Catalonia chicory, white onion, Verona radicchio, fennel, lettuce, parsley, radish, rocket, spinach, cabbage, carrots, cauliflowers and broccoli.
Alternatively, we can focus on ready-made plants, but choosing only those with ground bread: the important thing then is to follow them with irrigation at least in the first ten days. The best choices are: leeks, fennel, brassica, onions, salads, zucchini, chard.
Before proceeding, let’s restore the fertility of the soil with a well-matured soil conditioner and a horticultural fertilizer.
Work in the garden in August: The garden if we go on holiday
Many of us this month are moving a few weeks away from our homes. Unfortunately, this is the hottest and driest time of year. Here are a few ways to reduce the damage as much as possible.
First of all, we prepare a timed automatic irrigation: it is enough to have perforated pipes and a control unit (today there are very simple and cheap ones). We also place a thick vegetal mulch at the foot of the plants (the ideal is to use the grass flakes).
If possible, let’s give the task to some acquaintance to come and pick the vegetables that deteriorate faster or that, growing too much, would weaken the plant: salads, zucchini, basil, cucumbers. If this is not possible, we collect everything that is ripe (or almost) and we also remove the smallest fruits.
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