Beat the Summer Heat

May 27th, 2021

Beat the Summer Heat

Written by: Nate Fetig, Owner of Fossil Creek Nursery


Especially in Colorado, having supplemental irrigation is crucial to making sure your landscape beats the heat and survives tough temperatures. Depending on the spring weather and moisture, plants can grow faster and larger or bloom at irregular times. Monitoring bloom times and weather can help you determine the amount of care your plants will need during the warmer months. 


Here are some tips and tricks for making sure your landscapes survive the summer: 

  • Test out your systems & adjust irrigation times 
    • A good place to start is by turning on irrigation systems using a zone by zone function to make sure that your sprinkler heads are adjusted and functioning properly. Starting this sooner can also allow you time to fix any damaged or malfunctioning sprinkler heads. Don’t just assume that because you did this in the spring that everything is still operating correctly! 
    • Only apply as much water as your soil can withstand at a time. With Colorado clay soils, percolation rates of water are only about 0.1 inch per hour. If you are watering a spray lawn zone for 15 minutes, it would be more beneficial to run it for 7 minutes, move to other zones and then return to the area for the remainder of the 15 minutes. This method helps to reduce runoff and increases the efficiency of your irrigation. 
    • Run your systems late at night or very early in the morning. The amount of water that actually makes it into the soil and plants will increase, giving your landscapes the healthy drink they want throughout the day ahead. It also allows plants time to dry off before it gets too hot outside, helping prevent fungal infections. 


  • Potted plants need daily watering 
    • Once spring really turns to summer, your plants that live in pots will need to be watered daily- sometimes even twice daily! The Colorado sun and heat can be so intense that by adding this to part of your daily routine will help with the success of your plant life by cooling down and hydrating the plants. 


  • Mulch maintains moisture 
    • Adding a little bit of mulch to your plant beds can help retain moisture levels and slow down the evaporation process. Mulch is also an awesome addition to keep your landscapes looking fantastic!


  • Weed the weeds
    • Be sure to keep on top of weeding! Weeds use up the water you’re trying to give to ornamental plants. Weed the weeds, beat the heat. 


  • Mix it up 
    • Plant some native or dryland native plants to help reduce supplemental irrigation needs. These plants are born to beat warm temperatures and typically do very well in Colorado weather! 



Fossil Creek Nursery is a family-owned and operated, premier landscape and garden center for families throughout Northern Colorado located in Fort Collins. Our experts are always here to provide you with trips and tricks for Colorado landscapes.

7029 S. College Ave, Fort Collins, CO 80525 | 970-226-4924 |