Shirley Bovshow Answers Your Summer Plant Care Questions

Our gardening guru Shirley Bovshow is answering the most frequently asked Summer plant care questions.

How to water Split Leaf Philodendron plants during the Summer?

When watering the leaves, the plant holds many droplets that are attracting the sun – leading it to get sunburned. This plant likes to be in semi-shade, and you can put a little shade cloth over it to protect it in the hottest months.

When the plant is also up against a building it collects heat from the sunbaked concrete. That will also happen if your plant is near the sidewalk. So, water it near the base where it goes into the soil.

To keep your window box plants flowering at their best all Summer, care for them this way:

  • Plant them in a good sterile potting mix with peat, and perlite
  • Water them every day – the soil in your container is at least 10 degrees warmer than your air temp. So, on a 90-degree summer day, your plant soil is 100 degrees. It will dry out very quickly because you only have a limited amount of soil in the container.

How to Care For Summer Window Box Flowers

  1. Water the plants before you fertilize
  2. Fertilize them weekly. You need to get into the soil and scratch the fertilizer into the earth. Use a General all-purpose flower fertilizer and remember over time, your fertilizer will be leached out of the soil by the frequent watering so it’s important to replace it.
  3. Water them immediately after you scratch the fertilizer into the soil.
  4. Follow up with a liquid spray Foliar fertilizer. You can spray this right on the leaves and stems but not the flowers. This is really important because as the soil has been leached all week, the spray will give the plants an immediate boost while it waits for the dry fertilizer to kick in.
  5. There’s one more important step. It’s called “Dead Heading”. You need to trim the fading flowers, so they are not pulling the nutrients from the soil that the new and young flowers need.

If you follow these steps, you will have beautiful blooms all summer long.

Get more gardening tips from Shirley at

How to Start a Garden
How to Start a Garden