SRQ asks Gilkey: Summer Landscape Tips?

SRQ Magazine  has a monthly feature called “Nest,” and Michael A. Gilkey, Inc. was honored to be interviewed for its May edition. The following is Michael’s answer to the question, “What are your tips for landscaping in the summer?”Our Sarasota summers are our hottest and wettest months of the year. These are preceded by a springtime season, which traditionally brings a period of drought. It is extremely important in summertime not to over-water plants. It can be easy to over-water since we’ve just come off of a dry season—we tend to forget the afternoon showers that become a regular feature of early summer. I like to water plants when leaflets are just starting to curl or droop or show signs of being dry. A healthy root system leads to healthy leaves, not vice versa. If a plant is allowed to be thirsty before being watered, a long-term happy root system is created.  Gardening for the Senses Summertime is a great time for most flowering plants here in Sarasota. Butterfly gardens and edible landscapes do beautifully in the summer and will produce until first frost. Be careful not to go overboard with intensive planting and choose plants that are appropriate for our area. Use a local nursery—such as Wayne Hibbs Farm and Garden Supply or Crowley Nursery and Gardens—to help you select plants that will thrive in our climate and zone.

—Michael A. Gilkey, Jr., LA, Michael A. Gilkey, Inc.