SOUTHPORT, N.Y. (WENY) -- The first official heat wave of the season is in effect, causing gardeners to be worried about the possibility of plants suffering from heat stress. Many crops thrive in warm temperatures , but the consecutive excessively hot days can bring about problems.  Glenn Miller from Chamberlain Acres shared tips people can use during these hot days. 

'The first thing to do is probably water in the morning. A lot of people would water during the day, the water would evaporate quickly and a lot of times they would spot the leaves, You do not want to do it in the night because there is a lot of fungal diseases if they stay wet all night,'' said  Glenn Miller, owner of Chamberlain Acres. 

Glenn said that plants have time to dry when watered in the morning. However, at night water rests on the roots and foliage, leading to rot and fungal growth.

''One of the other good things you can do is mulch your garden or mulch your plants. It will help keep the moisture in and the soil cool,'' said Glenn Miller.

Mulching maintains soil moisture, improves the fertility of the soil and reduces weed growth. Glenn said that a healthy soil could help plants withstand the heat. 

“If your garden is small, provide shade in the afternoon. Old sheets, shade cloths, even a beach umbrella can help,'' said Professor Steve Reiners, a Horticulture Professor at Cornell University.

Professor Reiners advises people to not use fertilizers or chemicals, either conventional or organic, during heat as it can burn plants. 

“For container-grown plants, water twice a day, until you see water flow out the bottom of the containers. Move containers to a shadier part of the yard,'' said Professor Reiners. 


Summer officially starts Thursday, so more hot and humid days can be expected. The Climate Prediction Center is predicting well-above average temperatures this summer, meaning more days with temperatures that can cause stress to plants.