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Water roses now . . . refresh those strawberries . . . vivid bougainvillea . . . more beans from the bush

It doesn't matter what area of the country you live in, see to it that your roses are well watered and fed right now. For this queen among flowers to provide abundant late-summer and fall blooms, she requires some royal treatment when summer is at its peak.

Form a basin around each plant so that the water you give it soaks right in. Give each rose a good soaking once a week (twice a week if your soil is sandy), and surround them with a mulch to reduce evaporation and moderate soil temperatures.

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Prepare now for next year's strawberry harvest. Set your rotary mower on high (so it won't damage the crowns) and remove all the old leaves. Then thin plants to about 6 inches apart, fertilize, mulch between the plants (partly rotted compost would serve as both a mulch and feeding agent), and water well. This is the time of year when the strawberry stores away reserves in its crowns, from which spring next year's flowers and berries.

Not every plant requires heavy watering in summer. The bougainvillea, most common in southern California, is one of these. The blooms are a vivid color when the soil is on the dry side; water them, and the blooms lose some of their brilliance. So hold off watering immediately before and during the bloom period.

Here's a tip to prolong the harvest from bush beans. When the bulk of the crop has been picked, strip the plants of all remaining beans, even if they are immature. Now feed lightly and water well. Frequently the beans are stimulated to flower up and bear a second crop.

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