August Garden Checklist

Find out how you can keep your garden thriving and looking beautiful during the hot midwest month of August with these tips from Prairie Gardens Plant Experts.


In the heat of the summer, proper watering is one of the most important things needed in maintaing a healthy garden. Make sure you are watering often and consistently.

On hot, humid days you may need to water more than once, especially your containers and hanging baskets. On rainy days, you may not need to water at all. 

As a general rule, your plants should receive about 1″ of water a week. A rain gauge is a great too to use to measure rainfall in your garden.

The best time to water is in the morning. The water will not evaporate as quickly, giving the plants enough time to soak up the moisture before the heavy heat of the day.

— Mary-Ann M, Prairie Gardens Plant Expert


Refreshing mulch beds will help the soil retain moisture and helps retain moisture, prevent disease and prevent weeds.


With the heat, weeds will flourish. Stay on top of them by pulling them before they get out of control.

Weed in the evening when it’s cooler and also when the soil is wet, the weeds will pop out much more easily.

Containers & Hanging Baskets

Water well and continue to fertilize with a liquid fertilizer or slow-release fertilizer according to label instructions. If a container is starting to look overgrown, give it a trim. Learn how below:

Pruning & Deadheading

Pruning and deadheading, or removing spent blooms, helps promote new blooms and well-rounded growth habits. 

Lawn Care

Seeding: Late August is a great time to start seeding – visit our solutions wall for grass seed mixes perfect for every lawn.

Fertilizing: Wait until September to fertilize your lawn.

Mowing: Our Plant Experts recommend keeping you lawn at about 3″ or at least 2″. Longer blades help retain soil moisture, which is especially important as we start to enter in the warmer months.

Replacing & Refreshing

Sometimes a missed watering, not quite the right sun exposure, or other factors can lead to some plants not thriving in your garden. If a plant has faded past help, just pop it out and replace it with a new one. Visit our greenhouse for tons of fresh options. Plus, enjoy Summer Nursery Markdowns, going on now!

Fall Herbs & Vegetables

It’s time to plant cool-weathered veggies such as broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, spinach and more for fall harvests.

Continue to harvest and monitor your spring vegetables and herbs and apply consistent watering. Also watch out for insects and look for organic solutions in our greenhouse if they are spotted. If you have a problem or insect you cannot identify, put the foliage in a plastic ziplock bag and bring it into our Plant Experts – they’ll be happy to help!


Continue to fertilize you Roses throughout the growing season (until the end of August). Also remove spent blooms about once a week. Watch how to deadhead ever-popular Knockout Roses by watching the video tutorial below:

Look Ahead to You Fall Garden

It’s a great time to start looking out and planting fall blooming annuals and perennials, such as Chrysanthemums, Asters Astilbe, Coneflowers and more. Visit our Plant Experts in store for more of their fall blooming favorites!

Want more Garden tips?

Tune in every Saturday from 8:15am-9am to 1400 WDWS

for our Coffee With the Plant Experts Radio Show


Our Prairie Gardens Plant Experts answer all your garden questions and more!