Kitchen garden: The best garden tips for July

Vegetable gardeners have their hands full now. We give you an overview of the most important tasks to be done for your kitchen garden in our July gardening tips.

Jul 23, 2021 03:29 pm
readtime icon 15 Minutes
Carrots in the basket

Carrots taste sweeter when harvested young. Ripe root vegetables contain more typical aromatic substances and are suitable for storage

The harvest baskets in the kitchen garden are filling up in July. In addition to the harvest, there are some other tasks you must do. We will discuss these tasks in our gardening tips for July.

Harvesting time in the kitchen garden

Carrots sown in spring are harvested as bunch carrots as soon as the roots have reached their usual size. Then the beets are particularly crunchy and sweet, but contain fewer aromatic essential oils and can only be stored in the refrigerator for a short time - preferably without leaves. titleKohlrabi, radishes and garden radishes do not tolerate the summer heat as well and often form woody or fluffy cells when dry. They should be harvested and used a little too early rather than too late. Even celeriacs can be pulled out of the soil to thin out the rows. The still small but very spicy celeriac, including greens can be used as soup vegetables.

Do not eat the bitter zucchini

There are several reasons why Zucchini taste bitter. Toxic cucurbitacins are responsible for this. Actually, the plant’s protective substances have long since been bred out of the kitchen garden varieties found nowadays. If the plants suffer from heat or drought stress, they still form bitter substances and store them in the cells. Ornamental pumpkins also contain plenty of cucurbitacin. If these grow in the vicinity, this characteristic can be transferred to the seeds obtained from your own zucchini. Our gardening tip: If you are not sure about this, you should buy the seeds of zucchini and other cucurbits once a year. Avoid eating these vegetables if they are bitter. They can cause nausea and vomiting or, in individual cases, even lead to death.

Harvesting potatoes
Harvesting new potatoes
Always harvest new potatoes in batches, as needed, as soon as the tubers have reached an acceptable size

New potatoes are harvested on need basis. As long as the foliage is still green, the tubers in the soil continue to grow and the yield increases. However, do not wait until the leaves turn yellow before harvesting, otherwise the potatoes will lose their fresh taste. Ridge the plants regularly and keep the bed weed-free. Clear the rows completely only if the foliage dies.

Sow the lamb's lettuce and parsley

Lamb's lettuce requires a sunny spot and thrives there on a weed-free garden soil that’s not too dry. For the fall harvest, sowing of delicate-leaved varieties such as ‘Gala’ or Favor ’, for wintering outdoors only mildew-resistant, frost-resistant varieties such as‘ Vit ’,‘ Verte de Cambrai ’or ‘Dutch broad-leaved’ is only possible. The sowing is done about 0.39 inches deep and preferably in rows with a distance of 3.93 to 5.90 inches. Important: After covering the seeds, press the soil well so that the seeds are in contact with the soil. Then water it well and keep the bed evenly moist until it germinates.

Parsley germinates very slowly in cool weather. It is best to sow in July. The seeds are sown 3.93 to 5.90 inches apart, about 0.39 inches deep in a partially shaded location. . Important: Always keep the seedbed moist.

Sowing beans: Last date

The last sowing date for French beans is in mid-July, so you should implement this gardening tip as soon as possible. The plants are an ideal follow-on crop for early potatoes and kohlrabi. On the other hand, avoid vegetable beds that have had beans or peas on them in the past year. It is best to sow the beans in 1.18 to 1.96 inches deep grooves and cover them very thinly with soil. As soon as the beans germinate, the grooves are closed. Important: The shallow-rooted plants have to be watered regularly from the first flowering, otherwise the yield will be less.

Sow carrots for the autumn harvest

The last date for sowing carrots is beginning of July, which is why you should also quickly implement this gardening tip. The seeds germinate much faster in warm soil than in spring and form particularly tender roots. It is best to sow varieties with a short cultivation time such as ‘Milan’ or ‘Fynn ’. Marking seeds with radishes are not necessary in summer because of the shorter germination time; instead, you should mix in a few dill seeds. The proven mixed culture partner improves the aroma of the carrots and also goes well with carrot salad or vegetables in the kitchen. Important: Cover the bed with a cultivation protection net until the end of August, because that is how long the carrot fly will be looking for an egg-laying place.

Sowing carrots
If you still sow carrots now, you can harvest in fall
Mulching raspberries

As forest plants, raspberries love a humus-rich, cool and evenly moist soil. You should therefore protect your vegetable patch from drying out with a layer of mulch. A mixture of chopped shrub cuttings and dried grass cuttings is quite suitable as a mulch material. After the harvest, you don't have to water the berry bushes as often.

Propagate currants

You can easily propagate currants using cuttings. To do this, cut annual rods into 7.87 inches to 11.81 inches long pieces, strip off the leaves and plant the sections in a growing bed or in pots with sandy soil. Keep the cuttings moist until they root, overwinter them in the cold frame and transplant them in a permanent place the following year.

Thoroughly thin out the kiwi

Kiwis do not need much care because there are hardly any problems with pests and diseases. However, especially in the varieties that grow vigorously and have large fruits (Actinidia deliciosa), the tendrils become several feet long. So that the fruits receive enough sun, ripen early and evenly and store a lot of sugar and aromatic substances, you should now clear the trellis. Shorten all fruiting shoots six to eight leaves after the last fruit. Tendrils that have not set any fruit and are not needed for the trellis are completely removed.

Harvesting, drying and propagating the herbs

While most herbs are harvested shortly before flowering, with Oregano and thyme one waits until the light purple umbels have blossomed. Only then do the leaves develop their full aroma and retain it even after drying. It is best to harvest on a sunny morning after the night dew has dried. Our special gardening tip: As soon as bees and other flower visitors arrive, the content of essential oils is highest.

Harvesting herbs
Herbs are best harvested in the late morning

It will improve the taste if you keep the plants dry for a day or two before harvest. Todry herbs such as oregano, you can, for example, lay the branches individually on a frame covered with gauze or hang the herbs in small bundles in a shaded, warm place. After five to seven days, you can strip off the dry leaves and store them in screw-top jars. Lavender, oregano, rosemary and southernwood can be easily propagated by cuttings. To do this, cut the slightly lignified shoot tips, defoliate about half of the leaves at the bottom and place in pots with sandy potting soil.

Shielding the cauliflower

So that the cauliflower stays appetizingly white for as long as possible, you should now protect the flower from strong sunlight. To do this, simply fold over the large outer leaves and place them over the buds. If necessary, you can fix the leaves with a toothpick: Use it to pierce the ends of the opposite leaves from top to bottom just before the midrib and pierce it back up on the other side.

Occasionally water the compost

So that the rotting process does not come to a standstill, you should occasionally water the compost heap vigorously in constant warm weather. Always put harvest residues and other organic material well shredded onto the compost and mix the material well.

Watering compost
If the drought persists, the compost needs to be watered occasionally
Strawberries: Care after harvest time

After harvesting, strawberries need some maintenance so they can regenerate. Cap any runners and cut off the old, blotchy leaves just above the ground. The heart of the shrub should be preserved. Loosen the soil without damaging the roots. 200 to 300 milliliters of compost per square feet or an organic berry fertilizer promote the sprouting of healthy leaves and the planting of flower buds for the next season. Tip: If you want to grow your own young plants, you should only remove the leaves after the runners have been transplanted.

Sow the ice lettuce and batavia

Crunchy ice lettuce salads such as ‘Barcelona’ or the traditional ‘Laibacher’ ice lettuce are particularly popular in summer. Batavia is a newer type of ice lettuce from France, especially for growing in warmer regions. The bolt-resistant organic variety ‘Maravilla de Verano’ has delicate, red-tinged leaves and can be harvested over a long period of time. You can sow until mid-month. Because the seeds often do not germinate well at temperatures above 64.4 degrees Fahrenheit, during hot spells do not sow until the evening and cover the rows with a thin layer of compost (light germinator!). Then spray the seeds with ice-cold tap water and cover with fleece until they germinate. Tip: During summer, if mixed crops are being cultivated, you sow lettuce in the cool shade between taller vegetables such as French beans or Swiss chard.

Salad: Tips against shoot formation
Overgrown Lollo Rosso
Several cabbage lettuce and leaf lettuce form inflorescences prematurely in the summer heat. To prevent this so-called shoot formation , you should choose a cool place for the summer sowing of lettuce and shade it with fleece if necessary
Chinese cabbage needs a lot of warmth

Biologists suspect that Chinese cabbage is a cross between Pak Choi and turnip. It is certain that the Asian collard greens needs warm growing temperatures. Ideal germination temperature: over 71.6 degrees Fahrenheit! Below 64.4 degrees Fahrenheit you have to deal with premature flower formation, i.e. more "sprouting". That is why you only sow in a bed with thoroughly loosened, nutrient-rich soil in midsummer. A location in which new potatoes or peas have just been cleared, is ideal. Replant the plants at a distance of 11.81 to 15.74 inches as soon as they have formed sturdy stems and three to four leaves. Tip: Before planting, rake some algae lime (10 to 15 grams per square meter) into the soil and add half a handful to the planting hole when planting. In this way you can prevent an infestation with clubroot and ensure the supply of important minerals, especially calcium and magnesium.

Care for eggplants until harvest

For aubergines, eggplants, cut off the tip of the central shoot as soon as the first fruits can be seen. Then peel off the side shoots about two to three leaves above the fruit. So that the fruits ripen well and do not stay too small, each plant should have a maximum of five side shoots, all others are cut off from the main shoot. Cut the ripe fruits with shears about 0.78 inches after the stem base, as soon as they are fully colored, typical for the variety, but the kernels are still white inside. Tip: The peel quickly becomes dull in the refrigerator and unsightly brown spots appear. Better to store the fruits in the cellar or in another cool place at 50 to 59 degrees Fahrenheit. Important: Also watch out for potato beetles in eggplants! If the infestation is mild, you should simply collect the beetles, otherwise they can be controlled well with pest-free neem.

Harvesting eggplants
In the greenhouse, the eggplant harvest begins in July, outdoors you have to be patient until the beginning of August
Hoeing the vegetable patches

With the hoe you not only pull out the weeds in your vegetable patch - you also protect the soil from drying out through regular hoeing. The device destroys the fine water channels (capillaries) in the upper layer of the earth and thus lowers evaporation. It is best to hoe it after prolonged rainfall, when the soil has absorbed a lot of water and the surface is silted.

Harvest and store onions

It is still often recommended that the green onion leaves be torn down before harvest to encourage ripening. However, this leads to a sort of emergency ripening of onions. As a result, they are difficult to store, often start to rot from the inside or sprout prematurely. Wait until the tubular leaves bend over by themselves and have yellowed so far that almost no green can be seen. Then you lift the onions out of the earth with the digging fork, spread them out on the bed and let them dry for about two weeks. Instead, you can lay out the onions rainproof on wooden grids or in flat boxes on the covered balcony. Before storing, remove the dry leaves and wrap the onions in nets or decorative onion braids and store them in a cool, frost-free and airy room.

Grapevines: Pruning tendrils

Above all, the grapes of the vines need a lot of sun to ripen. Therefore, cut back the tendril shoots so that as little shadow falls on the fruit as possible. The rule of thumb for this garden tip: Cut off each shoot on the fourth to fifth leaves behind the last well-developed grape. In addition, as with tomatoes, clip off any young shoots that come up in the leaf axils (pruning).