Paula's Patch: A Minnesota Garden

Come wander in; my gate is always open! Gardening / Birding

Surviving the Heat? July 6, 2012

Blog post title inspired by a question a fellow gardening blogger wrote in a comment to me…thanks, Stacy, (Down to Earth Digs) for my Friday post inspiration!

Are YOU surviving the heat? How about your plants? Like us, they certainly need a bit more attention during these dog days of summer.

I’ve been stepping out early in the AM and my husband takes a spin in the late evenings to give our drooping plants and containers a cool drink of water.

If you have tender plants, move them into the shade or bring them in until the worst heat passes. I have a shallow dish garden that sits on my patio table and it just doesn’t do well if I leave it out on scorching hot days. On those day, it prefers my scorching hot porch instead. 🙂

I’ve also been sure to fill my water dishes for the birds. It’s amazing how quickly they can dry up when we have high heat and/or wind. You don’t have to have anything fancy. In fact, I don’t have one “official” birdbath in my garden. They all consist of clay pot saucers or shallow enamel trays and dishes.  Read this previous post for how to keep your birdbath clean longer.

Birds need water to drink and to help them cool off. Often times you’ll see birds simply standing in the water to cool off, much like we do at the lake. Did you know that birds cool off by opening their beaks? Birds don’t have sweat glands like humans, so they cool off by opening their mouths and breathing faster (panting) to increase airflow.

american robin cooling off | paulasgardenpatch.com | paula bonelli

Don’t forget to take care of yourself too! If you have to be outdoors — dress cool, drink plenty of water (before, after and during), and listen to your body. If you begin to notice heatstroke symptoms — headache, nausea, rapid breathing, racing heart rate, or confusion —  get inside immediately. And, PLEASE,  heed the warnings about exercise. NO cardio-type exertion is advised on days when high temps are combined with high humidity. Trust me, you don’t look cool running/jogging on a days like these; you look like a fool! I digress…

My husband and I are headed to a local festival this evening to watch a classic car show (temps equivalent to 100-110 degrees today–crazy, I know). I plan to take plenty of water and a cool cloth I can dip in the melting ice from our cooler. It’s amazing how much better you feel when you can place a damp cloth on your neck or head.

Beat the heat, stay cool and enjoy your weekend!

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7 Responses to “Surviving the Heat?”

  1. You’ve been having that terrible heatwave…most northern and north eastern cities have been suffering bad with temps like we have here, and it’s NO fun!
    My first summer in Florida shocked me, after being a Massachusetts resident for most of my life. I couldn’t believe how everything needed so much more water!

  2. Glad your doing well!!!! I’m watering like crazy–or some would say, crazy lady watering!
    Thank you for linking to my little blog! Stacey


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