Garden Tasks by Month | July in Zone 5

 Dear Garden Diary,

Phew! Things are heating up.The sun's really been beating down, which means I've been running the garden sprinklers a lot. The plants love their cool drink of water. And I take the opportunity to do a little rain dance and cool off in the sprinklers myself.

Aah! The simple pleasures of life.

xoxo Pia

P.S.- Take a peek at what's blooming in my Perennial Garden in July

Wild strawberries and purple catmint flowers on a July calendar
Wild strawberries and cat mint flowers

What Tasks/ Chores to do in my Garden in July? 
A Garden Maintenance Checklist for Zone 5


☐ Water regularly to avoid losing plants to the heat. Keep an eye out for drooping plants. Water garden beds in the morning.

☐ Water outdoor container plants and hanging baskets daily. Drooping plants and dry soil is a clear indicator plants need watering.

☐ Water lawns once a week.

 Water newly planted trees, shrubs, perennial and roses every week. They should receive 1 inch of water/ week.


Bench in lawn, red and white welcome mat on white deck
Here's a view of my lush, green July garden. See more pics of my July perennial garden here

Lawn Care

☐ Water lawn once a week deeply to encourage strong roots that go deep. Lawns require about 1 to 1.5 inches of water per week. 

  • Set the sprinkler for 1 hour once a week or 30 minutes twice a week.
☐ Mow lawn once a week. See "How to Mow the Lawn- Mowing Tips & Tricks"

Weed and Mulch

Watch for weeds and continue to hand weed regularly.
After weeding garden beds, apply a thick layer of mulch to control re-emergence of weeds and to retain moisture.


Fertilize container plants and hanging baskets. Be sure to water plants well before fertilizing. Avoid fertilizing in the heat of the day. Choose a cool evening to fertilize.

Rose Care

☐ Fertilize roses (beginning of each month June, July, August, September). See How and When to Fertilize Roses.

☐ Deadhead repeat flowering roses after they bloom. Cut back to the first set of five leaflets.

Cluster of white dawn roses
My White Dawn Roses

Identify Pests and Butterfly Caterpillars

☐  Watch for harmful pests and caterpillars on plants and hand remove.

☐  If you find caterpillars on parsley, fennel, dill, carrot plants, Joe Pye weed or butterfly weed, they are most likely Swallowtail or Monarch butterfly caterpillars. Instead of considering them pests, live and let live. Enjoy seeing them turn into butterflies.

Monarch butterflies on purple flowers
Monarch butterflies


Cut back/ Shear for a Second Bloom

Cutback or shear annuals and perennials that have completed their first blooms and have fading flowers. This will promote new buds for a second bloom in late summer.  (geraniums, salvia, delphiniums, Coral bells, begonias)

Prune Shrubs and Hedges

Prune and shape overgrown hedges and shrubs like redtwig dogwood, forsythia, burning bush. 
Remove vertical water sprouts from branches of fruit trees and ornamental flowering trees.

Deadhead and Pinch

☐ Deadhead day lilies soon after they have bloomed.

For shorter, bushier plants with more buds, continue to pinch late summer bloomers like chrysanthemums, asters until the middle of the month.



Sit outside every day and enjoy the garden. Consider having morning coffee in the garden and dining alfresco after sunset. String up lights, pipe music outside, hang up wind chimes, decorate the deck. 

See: 10 Ideas for Creating a Gorgeous Deck

☐ Cut flowers from the garden and bring them into the house to arrange and enjoy for yourself. 

Freshly cut flowers

Or try drying flowers and leaves and using them in unusual ways. Enjoy summer!


Dried hydrangeas in ice cream cones
Dried hydrangea blossoms


In case you missed it, also see:

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