July Garden Tips

Traditionally the season following an El Nino is ripe for hurricanes. That's what happened in the 1926 hurricane that hit Florida and in 1992 with Hurricane Andrew. Check your trees now to minimize possible damage from these devastating storms. Remove dead wood, crossing limbs, stubs and weak wood from your trees. When you hire a professional, use only certified arborists. 

Bugs are at their height of activity. Mealybugs seem particularly active on jatropha. Be alert for scale, whitefly, mites, thrips, aphids, caterpillars, chinchbug, sod webworms, beetles and weevils. 

Make sure your plants are getting enough water. A lot of problems are the result of record-breaking heat and lack of rain. Check irrigation systems for broken heads and pipes. Remove water-blocking branches. Use risers to clear taller growing plants. Water more frequently so new growth does not wilt 

Green Thoughts: Instead of replanting annuals two to three times a year, you can save money by planting perennials. Most perennials give daily color and last longer. I have found that the tall pentas and crossandra can survive at least six to seven years. 

Pinwheel Jasmine (Tabernaemontana divaricata)

Pinwheel Jasmine (Tabernaemontana divaricata)

This is one of the most reliable of the shrub bloomers with a good display of flowers every day of the year. It can grow to 8-10 feet in height but is a slow grower. The pinwheel jasmine does well in sun or shade but cannot tolerate high alkalinity. Do not plant this beauty within 5-6 feet of any cement including house foundations. The plant should be used as a specimen. It is excellent for lighting up a shady corner or located near an area used for night entertaining. The pinwheel jasmine has a layered growth habit and can make an interesting specimen for an oriental garden. White pinwheel-like blooms are individually small but are carried in enough quantity to make a good display. Fertilize with an ixora/gardenia fertilizer in March, June and October. 

  • Origin India 
  • Foliage Glossy oval pointed leaves. 
  • Growth rate Slow to medium 
  • Nutritional requirements Must have an acid soil or acid type fertilizer to do well. 
  • Soil requirements Acid soil 
  • Salt tolerance Low 
  • Drought tolerance Low 
  • Light requirements Wide 
  • Propagation Cuttings 
  • Major problems Mealybug, scale, mites, nematodes. 
  • Environmental problems None 


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