Local and Timely High Desert Gardening Tips

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July 4th thru July 18th, 2018

Moana Nursery Teammates say, "For successful high desert gardening, NOW is the time to ..........."

Bug & Disease Alert!

Squash bugs are starting to appear on squash, cucumbers, melons & pumpkins.  Use Bonide Eight (also controls ants, cicadas, earwigs, scale & mealybugs) or Bon Neem II to control these destructive pests.

  • Lawn Brown Spots have a number of causes:  heat, poor irrigation design, insects, rabbits or fungus.  Visit with one of our plant doctors to determine how to identify the cause in your yard.
  • Spider Mites are likely to start showing up on distressed trees and shrubs.  Remove affected foliage and treat with Bonide Rose Rx 3 in 1, Citrus Fruit & Nut Orchard Spray or Organocide 3-in-1 Garden Spray.   Do not compost affected foliage.
  • Powdery Mildew may be a problem on susceptible plants.  Remove affected foliage and use Bonide CopperFungicide, Bonide Funginol or Organocide 3-in-1 Garden Spray.
  • Aphids, in a variety of colors, may be showing up on just about anything – deciduous and fruit trees, roses, honeysuckle and more.  Use Bonide Insecticidal Soap, Bonide Rose Rx, Bonide Tomato & Vegetable Spray or Organocide 3-in-1 Garden Spray.
  • Codling Moths will have their second hatching soon. Use Codling Moth Traps to monitor when it occurs. Then apply Captain Jack’s Deadbug Brew, according to the label, to protect your apple crop from their hungry larvae. 
  • Earwigs are active in many yards – these guys eat at night, so you’ll only see the destruction they’ve wrought in the daylight.  Use Bonide Bug and Slug Killer, Bonide Eight or Diatomaceous Earth.
  • If Slugs are eating your plants, use Bonide Bug & Slug Killer to eliminate them.
  • Leaf Hoppers make your leaves look like lace.  Use Bonide Eight to treat them.

General Garden & Lawn Care:

  • Water newly planted trees, shrubs, perennials & roses 3 - 4 times per week in July and August.
  • Check all plants weekly to be sure they are getting adequate water; established trees, shrubs, perennials & roses require 1 inch of water per week throughout their root zones.
  • Adjust watering schedule as weather dictates.
  • Inspect irrigation system regularly for leaks, clogged emitters, broken/clogged head and other problems. 
  • Control insect pests, including leafminers, spider mites, thrips and others with beneficial insects like lady bugs.  Use Captain Jack’s Deadbug Brew, an organic insecticide, for chewing insects as a safe and quick control.  Ask us for best controls on significant infestations.
  • If not done yet, mulch garden beds immediately after weeding with 2 to 4 inches of G&B Organics Soil Building Conditioner to retain moisture and keep weeds under control.
  • Continue to cultivate and weed. 

Tree and Shrub Care:

  • Continue to deadhead roses by cutting flowers back to the first set of five leaflets.
  • Monitor roses closely for blackspot.  Remove any leaves that show darkened circles with fuzzy margins on either side of the leaves; yellow foliage with dark spots; and any leaves that have already dropped from the plant.  Begin a spray program with Bonide Rose Rx 3 in 1 immediately.   Dispose of infected leaves in the trash; do not compost.
  • If not done, yet, renovate overgrown shrubs including redtwig dogwood, lilac and forsythia by removing one-third of the oldest canes.
  • Fertilize roses for the third and final time at the end of the month with G&B Organics Rose & Flower Fertilizer.  Do not fertilize after August 1st.

Perennial & Annual Care:

  • For a second, late summer bloom, shear, cut back or remove flower spikes from catmint, perennial geraniums, salvia and delphiniums.
  • Remove spent flowers or seedheads of daylilies immediately to conserve plant energy.
  • Make note of empty spots in borders that might benefit from planting summer-flowering bulbs next year.
  • Continue deadheading annuals and perennials to encourage more flowering.  When deadheading annual geraniums, remove entire stem with fading flowers.
  • Continue pruning out longest stem of cascading petunias weekly to prevent plants from becoming scraggly.
  • Fertilize container plants with G&B Organics Bud & Bloome granular every three weeks or G&B Organics High Bloome liquid every two weeks; avoid applying in the heat of the day.  Always water plants before adding liquid fertilizer.
  • Hot dry weather can result in increased mite activity. Remove affected foliage and treat with Bonide Mite X or Organocide 3-in-1 Garden SprayUse according to the label.
  • Continue planting new perennials, ornamental grasses & roses.
  • Stake tall perennials plants, if necessary, by tying with soft Rapiclip Soft Twist Tie.
  • Continue to guide clematis & all other soft-stemmed vines to their supports and secure with Rapiclip Soft Twist Tie.

Herb, Fruit & Vegetable Care:

  • Espaliered fruit trees should be pruned for the second time once their spring flush of growth is over.  The first pruning is done in late winter when plants are dormant.
  • Stake tomato plants with tomato cages if they have no supports.  Begin harvesting as fruit ripens.
  • Monitor tomatoes and ensure that they receive an even supply of moisture instead of heavy soaking and then a drought. 
  • Monitor vegetables for symptoms of fungus or blight: soft, darkened areas, yellow and dropping leaves, sunken dark spots on otherwise green foliage.
  • Monitor all plants for insects.  Hand-remove large insects such as tomato hornworms, cicadas and other caterpillars.  For squash bugs, use Bonide Eight.
  • Continue to harvest herbs to use fresh, dry, or freeze in small batches in ice cube tray.  Pinch off developing flowers to retain essential oils and flavor in the plant’s foliage.
  • Fertilize vegetables with G&B Organics Tomato, Vegetable & Herb fertilizer every 2 weeks or G&B Organics High Bloome liquid fertilizer up to twice per week.


  • Many birds are now beginning their main molt (replacement of their feathers) which requires extra protein to grow strong feathers for proper flight and effective insulation. For the next few months, offer high-protein bird foods, such as nyjer, peanuts, Jim's Birdacious Bark Butter® and mealworms, to ensure that your birds have a reliable source of protein to help them with molting.
  • As summer progresses, rufous hummingbirds will start showing up and will stay into the fall.
  • Add movement to birdbaths with water wigglers to attract more birds.
  • Continue offering WBU Suet Dough to warblers, nuthatches, wrens & woodpeckers.
  • Continue to put out oranges, grape jelly and nectar for orioles and sugar water for hummingbirds.  Be sure to change every few days to avoid spoilage -- more frequently if in full sun all day.
  • Continue to supply fresh water and change it every 3 days to keep it clean.  To prevent the chance of disease, clean birdbath weekly with a weak bleach solution (1part bleach to 9 parts water) and rinse well.
  • Store bird food in a sealed container and keep in a cool dry place to prevent spoilage.
  • To ensure that bird seed is eaten quickly and stays fresh, keep feeders filled with a one or two day supply of seed.
  • Be sure to clean and sterilize your bird feeders every 6 weeks with a bleach solution (see above) to prevent the spread of disease.
  • Install a customized Wild Birds Unlimited bird feeding station where you can easily watch the birds it attracts.  It can be installed in the ground or on a deck. 

Did you know that we can do the following for you? (call 825-0602 x134 for more info.)

  • Indoor Plant Services offers clean-air plants, design,   installation, maintenance & more.
  • Plant rental service          
  • Seasonal container & bedding service                                            
  • Custom Container drop-off & pick up                                                             
  • Irrigation System Repair & Tune-up                            
  • Bulk Material Installation/Spreading with ‘Slinger Truck’ - Call: Moana Rock  (775) 691-1220
  • Create a backyard bird habitat; have a healthier landscape this year. Make an appointment for an at-your site consultation; call our Plant Doctors:  

Moana Lane: Jon Bruyn at 825-0602 x118 or jonb@moananursery.com

Moana Lane: Lisa Braginton at 825-0602 x104 or lisab@moananursery.com

S. Virginia St.: Steve Packer at 853-1319 x225 or stevep@moananursery.com

 Pyramid Way: Michelle Gilmore at 425-4300 x303 or michelleg@moananursery.com

Official Planting Guide from Moana Nursery

Moana Nursery's High Desert Vegetable Calendar

Helpful Video Showing How To Turn Your Irrigation/Sprinkler System On & Off - - View by clicking this link to Moana's You Tube Video.

Click on this link for ... Helpful Landscape Articles Written By Our Professionals For Do-It-Yourselfers.