Every July two things are sure in the Midwest: some of the hottest temperatures of the year will hit, and the garden will need attention to weeding and such tasks as dead-heading.
Earlier in the summer it was a good idea to nip off the tops of late blooming plants such as asters or chrysanthemums, but July is the time to cease pinching back.
Keep up the weeding, even though the temperatures feel like they could wilt you. To start early in the day is the antidote to the danger of overheating in the hot July sun. Different hoes are useful to not only keep weeds down, but to create a dust mulch. Shuffle hoes are good for this task.
Time to pick off Japanese beetles and other such pests. Japanese beetles are slow moving, and can be picked off and dropped into a bit of kerosene.
Using pheromone based bags might be a good idea when done in tandem with neighbors, especially if you have a large property where the bags can be placed at an outer part of the yard. Pheromone bags capture the beetles, but also draw them from surrounding areas.
Trim Back Annuals
During the month of July, dead heading and even giving your plants a haircut of trimming back the scrawny stems and diminishing blooms of the annuals, which have been blooming for more than a month now.
The spent foliage of bulbs can be mown or removed now.
Iris can be divided.July Chore Calender
It is very important, when temperatures are so high, to keep containers watered.
When watering garden, the best practice is to soak deeply, rather than sprinkling. This helps roots to grow deep. Soaker hoses are very helpful to slowly drip out moisture around the plants.
Fertilize your container plantings and annuals, but it si time to stop fertilizing tree and shrubs. Woody plants need to slow down and then enter a dormancy to prepare for winter sleep.
Harvest herbs in the morning. Now the early crops of lettuce are over, so go ahead pull out the lettuce plants and put them on the compost pile.
New sowings of cool crops may start toward the end of the month, lettuce, spinach and the like.
The joy of those first tomatoes ought to be arriving. The secret of good tomatoes is regular, but not excessive moisture.