LifestyleShining A Light


How to protect your plants and yard from record-breaking heat

6 tips to keep your yard thriving
Posted at 10:14 AM, May 30, 2024

RIVIERA BEACH, Fla. — For the last three years, I've been in charge of the yard for the first time in my life.

I've dug ditches and installed irrigation systems, planted flowers, and fixed patches of grass. As impressive as that may sound, I've made plenty of mistakes and have killed so many plants. (Which is tip number 1: be okay with failure, just learn from it.)

I've had the greatest success with mandevillas; a plant that produces colorful trumpet flowers. I've learned there are different varieties from those that climb and vine to those that simply blossom in a pot.

May's record-breaking heat has wreaked havoc on my yard. Red scorched patches of grass, to my newly installed bougainvilleas (pink flowering vine) losing all of their vibrant flowers.

Thursday, I went to Moon Valley Nursery in Riviera Beach to help get some answers. They have been around for nearly 30 years, but their first Florida location opened in January.

Kelly Hunomay, the general manager, said my first issue is I'm watering my plants too frequently. She said to go "low and slow." That's tip number two.

Soak your plants at a slow rate to make sure the water saturates the root system that way (tip number three) you can water less frequently.

If your plants are in pots, like mine are, you need to be watering every day (tip number four) because the water will evaporate.

Bryce Williams also works for the nurseries and he said it's time to get prepared for hurricane season, which starts June 1. He suggests thinning out trees that have a lot of branches so high winds can pass through more easily (tip number five).

Bryce also cautioned people not to spray water on leaves during the day he said it is like a magnifying glass to an ant. It will burn the leaves. If you want to properly water a tree it's the same advice, low and slow. Also make sure mulch isn't touching the branch and place your water source there so it can pool up and reach the root system (tip number six).