Lawn and Flower Garden: July in Ohio

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July is normally hot, dry, and humid here in Ohio. There is not much to do in your lawn/flower gardens now that summer is here.

It is a good time to have your mower blade sharpened again. Grass will begin to get stressed by now so do not aerate or fertilize your lawn this month.  You should set your mower at 3 inches and make sure that you water your lawn deeply; soak down 6-8 inches every 10-14 days.

Be sure to give your perennials (flowers that return each year) a good soak every 7-10 days (1-2 inches). There is not much else to do with your flowers in July other than keep them watered and weeded. Be sure to deadhead to encourage new blooms. Continue to pinch Mums back this month.

Japanese beetles appear in July. Pick them off your roses, shrubs and other plants and destroy them in a jar of soapy water. Remove any bagworms, caterpillars, and other pests from your shrubs and trees.

Watch out for poison ivy and oak this month. Remember “Leaves of 3–Let it Be”. Paint the stems and lower foliage with Roundup which will kill the roots.

After your Clematis blooms in June you can cut back the stems 1/2 way in July to stimulate a possible repeat bloom later in the summer.  Mine never re-bloom but I have read where some do!l!

Since there is not a lot to do in your yard this month, enjoy our summer and take some time to visit the pool, have cookouts with family and friends, and take long naps under your favorite shade tree.

headshotAbout the Author: Sheri Miller is the Owner of Another You, LLC, a Business Concierge/Personal Assistant service in the Dayton, Ohio area. Sheri helps small business owners save time and money by taking care of their day-to-day administrative tasks. Think of her as your right hand while your left hand is growing your business. http://www.anotheryouerrands.com 937-416-2207

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Ohio Flower Gardening in June

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You can really beautify your yard this month with annuals (plants that only last 1 season). When it gets hot, those Pansies that you planted early in the season may start to look a little worn. Replace them with some showy annuals. The Poppies, Bleeding Heart and Virginia Bluebells will die all the way back and leave bare spaces. Fill those, and any other areas where you need color, with containers of long-lasting annuals. Your annuals have shallow roots, so they will need watered more regularly than your perennials (those plants that come back each year). In the hot, Ohio summer, your pots and containers made need daily watering. Just check the soil by poking your finger in it.  If it comes out clean-time to water! Make sure to deadhead spent flowers to encourage more blooms.

Grass should need less mowing in June due to the warmer temperatures. Make sure your lawn gets 1 inch of water per week. Move your mower blade to 2.5-3 inches so the grass will not brown out in the summer sun. Alternate your mowing pattern (vertical, horizontal, diagonal) each time you mow to minimize wear. So that beetle larvae will not feed on your lawn later in the summer, June is a good time to apply an environmentally friendly pesticide such as Merit or Mach ll.

If you fill your flower beds with perennials, you will save yourself time and money next season. Plant your perennials soon after purchase and be sure to read the plant markers. Pay attention to how much sun they need and any other care that may be necessary. If you did not divide your existing perennials last month you can do so early in June; just make sure they are well-watered for a couple of days after division. Mulching around your flowers will help with weeds and water retention. Established perennials need about 1 inch of water per week. Pinch back the stems of your Mums by 1/2 to encourage a more bushy plant with lots of blooms in the fall. Do this on a regular basis until mid-July so that your Mums do not bloom too early and you will have beautiful, fall color in October. To control other late summer or fall blooming plants such as Aster, Beebalm and Goldenrod, cut back the new stems about half way once they grow to 10-12 inches tall.

To prolong the life of cut Roses cut them in the early morning or at dusk. Cut only the flowers that are in the late bud stage. Use sharp pruners (and gloves!) and cut at a 45 degree angle. Immediately immerse the stems in fresh, tepid water and set them in a cool place for a few hours. Re-cut the ends and arrange them in a vase with water and preservative (I hear vodka works well).

Happy June Gardening!

About the Author: Sheri Miller is the Owner of Another You, LLC, a Business Concierge/Personal Assistant service in the Dayton, Ohio area. Sheri helps small business owners save time and money by taking care of their day-to-day administrative tasks. Think of her as your right hand while your left hand is growing your business. http://www.anotheryouerrands.com 937-416-2207

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What does your Priority List look like?

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While I was out digging up a few dandelions that had sneaked into my new spring  lawn, I noticed my neighbor’s grass.  From the road his lawn appears to be full and green but when you take a closer look you see that instead of grass, his lawn is mainly weeds. My neighbor has a wonderful home that is beautifully decorated and he is constantly working on it to keep it looking very nice.  His home is definitely on his priority list.

A priority is a thing that is regarded more important than another thing. Each of us has different items on our priority lists. What decides our priorities? How do our lists change with our life transitions? What does the list of a small business owner look like?

Good business planning must involve the setting of priorities. Priorities might include money (cash flow and expenses), customer service, networking and making sure your service or product is the best that you can provide. I wonder how many business owners have TIME on their priority list. Do we schedule FAMILY and FRIENDS on our list? Is ME time a priority?

Work–life balance is a concept including proper prioritizing between “work” (career and ambition) and “lifestyle” (health, pleasure, leisure, family and spiritual development. It is so important to both the health of your body and mind and the health of your relationships to have a balance between work and life. Where does work-life balance fit on your priority list?

As a small business owner when was the last time you studied your priority list?  Is your list conducive to a work-life balance?   Do you need to delegate tasks to someone else to free up time? What if you took most of your workday to do the tasks that excite you and that you are great at and then simply delegate the other stuff to someone else?  Outsourcing just 4 hours out of a 40-hour work week gains you a 10% increase in time that you could be spending on yourself, your family and your friends.

Steven Covey suggests that, “The key is not to prioritize what’s on your schedule but to schedule your priorities.”  My neighbor, Donnie, is a hard worker and a great neighbor; but one who has not scheduled his lawn on his priority list!

If you are a small business owner that has few hours a week of tasks that you would like to delegate, I would be happy to discuss how I could help you.

headshot  About the Author:  Sheri Miller is the Owner of Another You, LLC, a Personal and Business Concierge service in the Dayton, Ohio area. Sheri helps busy people. She provides support for both the individual and the small business owner. http://www.anotheryouerrands.com 937-416-2207