If you live in a rural area, keep a look out for any young snakes during these hot summer months. They like to lie on warm stones and drowse in the heat. They can also lurk under bushes and shrubs, so take care when clearing out old leaves from beneath them. Add those dead leaves to your compost bins along with salads, veggies and dead flower heads, but make sure that the layers are not too deep or compacted. It greatly benefits the heap if you turn it over occasionally, but it is not a job for a hot day! By autumn, the contents should be ready to dig into your beds. Keep deadheading your plants and as the flowers turn to seeds remember that a lot of them are far from nice! In fact, a lot of them are downright poisonous! Every part of oleander can be harmful and lantana berries, which look like ripe blackberries, are toxic.
Enjoy the summer and don’t try to do too much in the garden, just keep it ticking over. It can all wait until the weather beings to cool down, which according to local custom should be after Maria’s Assumption on August 15.