Your To-Do List for Gardening in August

August is a time of abundance in the garden.

Plenty of tomatoes, eggplant, sweet corn, peppers, green beans and cucumbers among other crops make August a month of bounty!

It’s also the time of plenty of weeds, diseases and insects that require time and attention to keep the bounty going through the fall.

Here are my recommendations for August to-dos in the garden.
august gardening

Plant seedlings of broccoli, cabbage and cauliflower to be harvested in fall. Plant radishes, beets, kohlrabi and carrots early in the month and lettuce, spinach, mustard greens, kale and Swiss chard later in the month.

Count the number of days from your planting date until your first frost date to see if there is enough time to plant and harvest this fall. For example, our average first frost date is October 15. So I know I will have enough days between now and then to plant carrots in early August for a harvest before the first frost.

Consider sowing cover crops like buckwheat or winter rye in empty areas of the garden. Cover crops (green manuresĚ) will help you avoid weeding those bare spots in the vegetable garden and and the organic matter will improve the quality and tilth (the ability to till, consistency) of the soil for next years garden.

We like to start an indoor herb garden now for basil and parsley. You can also add rosemary, thyme, marjoram, mint and summer savory. Order your spring-flowering bulbs later this month. I recommend you view an online catalog or order a printed one from an organic bulb source like Brent and Becky’s Bulbs.

Listen to my Green Divas In The Garden podcast segment for August gardening tips and then read on for more…

Late Summer Vegetable Harvest

This is the time to pick your tomatoes, sweet corn, summer squash, cucumbers, melons, green beans, onions, broccoli, cauliflower, eggplant, peppers, potatoes and herbs.


Watering is essential in August. A great way to conserve water a precious resource is by capturing it in a rain barrel.

Refresh those containers by cutting back overgrown annuals plants (they will flush with new growth in two weeks) and replace some that have seen better days. Herbs that are looking tired will also benefit from being cut back.

Allow lily stems to yellow and die naturally. This restores the bulb for next years blooms.
Woman weeding in the garden

Now is a good time to refresh your strawberry beds. The plants are forming the buds that will be next year’s strawberries. It is best to till around the plants to create a row of plants about a foot wide. Do this by digging out the runners on the sides.

Fertilize You may want to fertilize your annuals and containers with an organic fertilizer.

Monitor all plants for insect and disease damage. There are natural Bt sprays for caterpillars and different ones for beetles. You can control thrips and aphids with insecticidal soap. Be sure to spray the underside of leaves. Keeping your plants healthy and catching problems early will eliminate the need for pesticides.

Stay on top of weeding, especially those weeds trying to get large enough to go to seed. Also remove diseased leaves and stems when you see them. This will cut down on the amount of fungal diseases in the garden.

Deadhead annuals to keep them blooming until frost.


Have you made notes about the combinations of flowers that you liked this year and those you would like to try next year?

I make a lot of notes about improvements I could make to my vegetable garden for next year. I also make a map of what I planted where this year so I know where to rotate crops for next year.

Make a note to try new types of sunflowers next year.  They are easy to grow!
Make a note to try new types of sunflowers next year. They’re easy to grow!

Written by Green Diva Ali | Images via


Nicole L.
Nicole L3 years ago

Thanks for the info.

Marie G.
Marie G3 years ago

Very useful, thanks!

Kamia T.
Kamia T3 years ago

We're in dog days - 100 temps day after day. Even the dogs hate it! The only thing I'm trying to accomplish is to keep everything important watered enough that they survive. It would be suicidal to plant anything right now, so we trim, we water; we water, we trim and pray for rain. Can't wait for the fall at this point.

Colin Hope
Colin H3 years ago

Thanks for sharing!!

Judy Apelis
Judy A3 years ago

Thank you so much!

Barb Hansen
Ba H3 years ago

good tips

Janis K.
Janis K3 years ago

Thanks for sharing.

Karen Martinez
Karen M3 years ago

Where I live, August is the time of 100 degree temperatures. Must wait until September to do some planting. I can till and compost now, but NOTHING will grow until next month. What I did have planted has withered and died--regardless of how much I watered. My poor Basil is even feeling the effects of the heat. The Rosemary, on the other hand, is thriving.

Sarah Hill
Sarah H3 years ago


Ana R
ANA MARIJA R3 years ago

Bookmarked. Thank you!