Anybody having success with the heat?

drippy(7bAL)August 5, 2010

I'm not, that's for sure. Between the heat & the soil, most of what I've planted out (just moved here, brought containers, some larger, some seedlings, with me) has died. I've decided not to plant anything else in the ground until it gets cooler, but am still running the Red Queen's race trying to keep things alive in the containers - have lost quite a few of them as well.

Is it just me not being used to the climate yet? Or are others having trouble too?

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I'm not having any issues, but everything I have is in the ground and mulched, and the flavor of my summer vegetables is very nice. Containers make brutal conditions in this heat -- it might help to mulch around the containers with straw to help keep the worst of the heat off of them.

Actually I started my fall seeds in tall flats out front (okay, plastic shoeboxes) and they are doing fabulous although I don't know why they are even alive. They are in the shade but it's still pretty hot out there.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2010 at 3:51PM
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tedevore(7b Al)

My garden is looking a little sadder every day. Every day it thunders and gets dark around me in hoover, but i miss the rain. It will be raining as I drive around just south Pelham after work, raining downtown, but none here. Ive had 1 inch of rain in almost the last 5 weeks. That doesn't go far when its 100 degrees or close to it, and its not fun and costly to drag the hose around. Other than that, I'd much rather have this than the cold of last winter.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2010 at 7:36PM
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About the same here in Pinson. This afternoon it rained all around my part of the county, but all I saw were a few sprinkles. The good rain came within a half mile!

My tomatoes are doing great in this heat. The drip irrigation system I recently installed really helps them. Wish I'd thought of it years ago!

    Bookmark   August 5, 2010 at 8:15PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

No problems here. Everything in containers gets watered every night and all is well. We don't have irrigation, so we've been watering different parts of the relatively new landscape and perennial beds upon occasion, maybe once or twice a week. Maybe not even that often. They're pretty tough, lol.

The knock-outs continue to bloom their heads off in the hottest part of the yard. Crazy.

Any rain in the area has missed us. So frustrating to hear the thunder and smell the rain, but not see a drop.

Oh...the grass look like crap, but I'll be darned if I'm going to spend money on keeping grass green, lol.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2010 at 10:48AM
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Okay, just my inexperience, then. I'll learn! Rhizo, my grass looks great, LOL, although I believe it's mostly Bermuda grass (possibly - not familiar with this, but from what I've heard, it seems like it). I agree with you, though, I wouldn't spend any money trying to keep the grass green - I never water it.

I got brave and planted two rudbeckias and three veeeery tiny echinacea tenneseensis in the ground today, figuring the rudbeckias are tough, and the echinacea is native. I also have almost finished putting soil into a raised bed for some late season veggies, so I'm far from giving up!

Got a good soaker here in Madison yesterday.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2010 at 12:01PM
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Bermuda and St. Augustine can handle this heat and dryness just fine.

Drippy, I'm in Madison, too, but I hardly got any rain despite all the thunder and ruckus. I got a little overnight, too, but it looks like that was a light shower, too.

Unfortunately it looks like Colin isn't going to bring us any rain ,either.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2010 at 2:01PM
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catbird(z7 AL)

Drippy: Don't feel like the Lone Ranger. I lost a lot of plants in prior dry years when I first had time to start planting some. It's really hard to get anything through those first couple of years in this kind of heat and drought, and even lots of watering doesn't really make up for good rains now and then. It doesn't help that the plants you brought from Massachusetts by way of SC aren't used to this heat. My plants are faring better now that they're established, so hang in there. Maybe you can get some things in the ground this fall and winter so they can get a head start for next summer. In the meantime, happy watering!

Hope you'll be able to come to the Fall plant swap. You'll go home with lots of plants that love this part of the country. ;-)

    Bookmark   August 6, 2010 at 2:50PM
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Catbird, thanks for the encouragement - I am hoping to attend the fall swap, but just not sure I can commit yet. I teach piano on weekends so have to rearrange a few things first.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2010 at 9:53PM
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An inch of rain on one acre is 27,154 gallons. I don't know about y'all, but I can't afford to water my lawn at that rate. It survived 2007 and I'm sure it will survive this summer.

For the last two days I've watched the rain come close to my neighborhood only to be left out again. Maybe today will be my lucky day? :)

    Bookmark   August 7, 2010 at 7:23AM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Yay, we got a roaring rainstorm yesterday afternoon from about 1:00 until close to 2:30! Couldn't believe it. Yet, at the UAH campus where my husband works, it stayed high and dry (again).

    Bookmark   August 7, 2010 at 1:19PM
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Okay, NOW I'm jealous. I prefer my "other people got rain" to remain anonymous.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2010 at 3:55PM
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On Friday, we got a hard rain in Hueytown. I didn't have my rain gauge out but judging by how full the pond got (lip is elevated so no run off goes in), we must have received about 2 inches. During the last 3 or 4 weeks, we've only had enough rain to wet the driveway. I water almost every day. Everything seems to be surviving. Due to the EXPENSIVE, no  EXORBITANT, no - EXTORTIONIST sewer rates in Jefferson county, I watered very little during the 2007-2008 drought and lost all of my beautiful oakleaf hydrangeas. I'll not repeat that mistake.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2010 at 9:52PM
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I guess I chose a good year to plant trailing lantana. They're really taking off despite the heat and lack of rain, no extra watering needed. Not flowering a ton, though.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2010 at 10:49PM
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We had right at 2.5" for the month of June, one-half-inch for the entire month of July, and so far nothing in August.

Drought has killed all 12 of my Encore azaleas, a 10-year-old "Milky Way" dogwood, a 12-ft.-tall 'Orido Nishiki'
Japanese maple, and an 8-ft.-tall viburnum, along with lots of others. Excessive heat is causing most of my other Japanese maples to defoliate, and has caused 18 one-gallon-pots of Thai Giant seedlings to wither and die.

Oh, asked! ;-)


    Bookmark   August 8, 2010 at 2:25PM
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Oooooohh, Nelson, sorry to hear about those losses. I've managed to keep most everything alive, but lost a few things early this year and I can't really blame those on the heat or lack of water (lost 1 of 3 new JMs and a new peony). But when Huntsville and Madison get rain, we often don't in Laceys Spring. I was talking to my DH the other day and he said it was raining in the back yard and not in the front. That is just weird. It eventually did rain a little in the front, but was only a small shower. At the lake in G'ville, folks are telling me it rained about an inch Thursday.

So far, with the irrigation system going twice a week and my supplemental soaker hoses in the veggie garden, things are doing ok. I just can't get too motivated to get out and do much after work as it's still too hot.

Drippy, as to container plants, I have scaled mine back a bit this year due to losses in the past. I have several planted with things that I've found do fairly well even if they get a little dry (portulaca, sage, asters, cordyline, for example). I scatter them around so they get a little of the irrigation but I still have to water them every day or so depending on the plants in them.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2010 at 2:36PM
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tedevore(7b Al)

Nelson, besides the 0.2 inches I got today, my rain totals are about the same as yours. as it was in the drought of 2007, I'm not trying to keep things thriving, I'm just trying to keep everything surviving. I think most of my perennials will make it even if they don't look so hot, but I have to go out of town for a week, and Im sure my big pots of annuals will be crispy critters when I get back.

I'm much happier than I was in winter, but I'd like a more 'average' season once in a while...not TOO unusually, hot, dry or cold...spring was nice this year, for the very short time it lasted!

    Bookmark   August 8, 2010 at 9:17PM
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STROBE(zn 7b)

Yep, I was walking out of Winn Dixie in Hueytown friday and almost drowned lol!

I planted gardenias (that i got from Terry at my first swap oak mountain when they were tiny little things) a couple months ago. I know it wasnt the best time to plant, but the people that moved into my old house kept throwing cigarettes on them and dumping vegetable oil on everything outside so i had to rescue them! But they were doing fine til about two weeks ago. They are still half green/half dead, but i think they will be fine next year. I've been watering them every other day and i've mulched them too... I hope they make; they smell so great. :)

I also cut a LOT of grass one weekend in June and it has not grown AT ALL since then...I'm not complaining at all about that!

Good Luck!


    Bookmark   August 9, 2010 at 9:58AM
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jcalhoun(8b Mobile County AL)

My Carolina Jessamines are doing well. Everything else is surviving but not flourishing.

I've gotten rain for the last four days. The back yard is so soggy I told the yard man to wait a couple days before mowing.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2010 at 10:58AM
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Nelson, ouch! My plants are all "starter" plants - LOL, former owner didn't leave a lot of established plants, and what he did plant - liriope, hostas (drab ones), Japanese spirea - isn't really my speed anyway. I'd be upset if I lost a lot of nice established plants.

Outsideplaying, it is my intent to have considerably less in containers by next year - I'm just waiting for cooler weather and a chance to improve the soil a bit before planting these out. I also have a lot of herbs in containers, and want to design a garden before putting them in.

Strobe, I wish my grass wouldn't grow! I'm wondering if it doesn't have some kudzu DNA (do plants have DNA?) in it; I swear it grows overnight.

Got 3 new 3x3 raised beds set up for some late season vegetables over the weekend. They're in the sun, though, so I'll wait until next weekend to plant them, and hope the triple-digit temp threat backs off.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2010 at 5:52PM
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I bought 5 rose bands. I planted them in gallon pots, like I usually do with bands, and they seemed to be doing well, putting on new growth, everything as normal. Then...leaves started yellowing, falling off. I moved them to the greenhouse, and it didn't help. I lost all five of them.

Chapter two. I had ordered an additional five rose bands. They came and the same story started again. This time, I decided the heat was too much, and before I lost five more roses, I brought the little roses into the house and put them under lights. They are growing very well, and when this heat and drought ease up, I will take them back out and try again.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2010 at 12:00AM
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catbird(z7 AL)

NO RAIN HERE. :-( Even my p'tunies have croaked! I have a couple that are in afternoon shade and they're surviving, but the ones in the BIG strawberry pot, watered daily but in full sun have given up. Also lost the St John's wort that I haven't watered all summer, but most other stuff is surviving -- barely.

    Bookmark   August 13, 2010 at 11:34PM
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