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June Gardening Tips

Tips for your Garden in June

as recommended by Charla Anthony

Harvest is often associated with October, but for Central Texas, it is without a doubt the month of June, when gardens and orchards are bursting with ripe fruits and vegetables. If you’ve nothing yet to harvest, there is still time to plant a few things that tolerate summer’s heat.

Things to plant:
1. Seeds of lima beans, Southern field peas, okra, pumpkin, summer squash, winter squash, cantaloupe, honeydew and watermelon.
2. Small plants of cucumber, eggplant, Malabar spinach, peppers, tomatillo, basil, comfrey, lemongrass, lemon verbena, Mexican mint marigold, oregano, mint and thyme.

Things to harvest or look for at the Farmer’s Market:
1. Carrots, corn, cucumbers, green beans, peppers, radishes, squash, tomatoes and turnips. Also, blackberries, blueberries, figs, peaches, plums and melons. Harvest the edible flowers of day lily, garlic chives and Mexican mint marigold.

2.Luscious, vine ripened tomatoes are what consume the thoughts of virtually every home gardener. Growing up, my family’s garden always had at least a dozen tomato plants that we harvested primarily in June, when the bulk of Texas’ homegrown crops are maturing.

Plant: March and April in Central Texas
Light: 6-8 hours full sun daily
Water: 1-2 inches per week
Soil needs: Well-draining soil amended with compost
Fertilization: Medium

Harvest and eat vine ripened tomatoes immediately or refrigerate. And, since tomatoes are climacteric (continue to ripen after harvesting) to outsmart pesky birds, you can pick them in the pink stage and allow them to ripen indoors, unrefrigerated. Or if you’ve never had a fried, homegrown green tomato, maybe it’s time to give them a try.

There is plenty of discussion among gardeners as to the best varieties and method of growing each type. In fact, entire books are written on the subject and we have complete information at our website http://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/vegetable/easy-gardening-series/

Charla Anthony is the horticulturist for Brazos County at Texas A&M AgriLife Extension, 2619 Texas 21 W., Bryan, Texas 77803.
For local gardening information, visit the website: brazosmg.com. Gardening question? Call 979-823-0129 or email cmanthony@ag.tamu.edu

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