It's July and boy is it HOT! With daytime temperatures in the 90s and nighttime hovering between the high 60s and low 70s, you are probably seeing your plants struggling. One way to help them out while still trying to conserve is to follow the city's Water by the Numbers recommendation of a 3 times per week watering schedule. Generally, we recommend watering between 6 A.M. and 10 A.M. but it's also fine to water potted plants in the evening if there's adequate drainage.
What's Wrong with the Leaves?!?
Though you may want to stop fertilizing your plants during this time, particularly cool season grasses. This helps reduce growth, heat stress, and water usage. Now, you may still notice some of your plants turning yellow with stunted growth. Well, due to New Mexico's sandy, alkaline soil having a higher than average pH, this discoloration is often caused by an iron deficiency (iron chlorosis). One of the most obvious signs of this beginning is a yellowing of the leaves in between the darker green veins and, while you should still get a second opinion, this is easily treated with an application of Chelated Iron.
Continue to mow your lawns during this time if you can. Depending on what type of lawn you have, warm or cool season, this will change the mowing height. Cool falls around 3"-3.5" and we find that warm does better at 1"-1.5" with both mowed weekly. If possible, try not to cut off more than 1/3 of the height per service.
For our little flying friends, relocate birdbaths, if you can, to shaded areas. This will help with evaporation and keeping both them and the water cooler. If these spots are near trees or shrubs, which are also good sources of shelter, that can promote more use, too!