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Mountain West Regional Reports

Mountain West: August Garden To-Do List

Make sure to keep up with harvesting produce to promote continued production. Photo: Jennifer Benner.

Keep on picking! Many berry plants, vegetables, and annuals respond by making more blossoms and fruits when you keep up with the harvest.

Remove seed heads from perennials and annuals if you don’t want self-seeding proliferation. If you want to keep them, many perennial seeds are great food for birds and pollinators.

This is a good time to start perennials from softwood cuttings. Use the healthiest branches available. Plants that are easily multiplied by softwood cuttings include lavateras (Lavatera spp. and cvs., Zones 7–10), rosemary (an herb but treated as a perennial), bee balms (Monarda spp. and cvs., Zones 4–9), penstemons (Penstemon spp. and cvs., Zones 4–9), Autumn Joy sedum (Hylotelephium telephium ‘Herbstfreude’, Zones 3-9), and ‘Matrona’ sedum (Hylotelephium telephium ‘Matrona’, Zones 3-9). And while redtwig dogwoods (Cornus sericea, Zones 3–8) are considered shrubs, they propagate nicely when you take cuttings, grow them out, and replant them where needed.

Spotted bee balm (Monarda punctata, Zones 3–8) makes a good candidate for propagation via softwood cuttings. Photo: Carol Collins.

Mary Ann Newcomer is the author of two books: Rocky Mountain Gardener’s Handbook and Vegetable Gardening in the Mountain States.

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