Timely Tips for June in the Garden

June 8, 2023
Sue Adams


  • Watering: When watering containers, don’t “tease the leaves.” Water thoroughly. When it’s cool and cloudy, your containers may go a few days without watering. But on hot, windy days, they’ll dry out quickly. If a container has a saucer, empty out the water. Let soil dry out in between watering. but not to the point of wilting. How to know if your container needs watering? The finger test – put your finger into the soil; if it’s wet, don’t water. Or lift the container. If it’s way too heavy, it certainly won’t need watering. If you notice that the container never seems to be drying out, the problem may be no drainage holes.
  • Fertilizing: Fertilizer is plant food. Petunias and million bells eat like teenage boys. Start with a slow release fertilizer like Osmocote, then after two or three weeks (depending upon how much you’re watering), supplement with a liquid fertilizer.
  • Maintenance: If your plants start getting leggy, treat them to a salon day and cut back – give ’em a good trim, followed by watering and fertilizing. They’ll reward you by being lush beautiful blooming plants in a couple of weeks. If the foliage of million bells or petunias turns light green and yellowish, they may need an iron supplement. This has to be applied once or twice during the season.

Vegetable Garden

  • Cool season vegetables may be nearly spent by June, but there is time to add new vegetable plants and seeds such as beans and squash. Check Adams’ Easy Vegetable Gardening Guide to see which vegetables can be planted more than once so you’ll have a bounty of fresh veggies all summer long.
  • Cover members of the cabbage family with row covers to prevent cabbage worms.
  • Keep weeding. Regular weeding now will help crops get a good start. And don’t forget about mulch!


  • Perennials that are getting too large or ungainly can be divided in June and transplanted in new locations.

Annual Flowers

  • Profusion, Star, Magellan and Queeny are all resistant to powdery mildew. But if you love the old-fashioned, big flowered varieties, spray with an organic fungicide as a preventive.
  • Enjoy their beauty outside and inside as well, in beautiful arrangements.
  • Deadheading encourages reblooming.


  • Evergreen shrubs should be pruned when new growth is partly unfurled.
  • Flowering shrubs like forsythia and lilacs should be pruned after they’ve flowered.
  • Don’t prune summer flowering shrubs like hydrangeas this late in the season; otherwise you’ll sacrifice blooms.