August Lawn & Garden To-Do List

August begins right in the middle of the “dog days of summer,” the hottest and most sultry time of the year. Ancient cultures believed that the excessive heat was caused by the alignment of Sirius, the Dog Star, with the sun during the summer. These are the days when everything seems languid and still – except mosquitoes, of course – and the sun threatens to bake lawns, gardens, and gardeners alike.

There is plenty to do in the garden in August, although it is best done in the early morning or late evening when temperatures are more comfortable. Whether you’re in cooler climates making early preparations for autumn, or warmer ones enjoying the height of the garden’s bounty, here are some suggestions for tasks around your yard and garden in August.

Lawn Maintenance and Preparation

  • Prepare for fall grass seed planting by leveling low spots, removing weeds, and choosing your seed if it needs to be ordered in advance.
  • Aerate your lawn and dethatch it.
  • If there is plenty of rainfall, fertilize your lawn.
  • To help your grass beat the heat and reduce lawn maintenance, keep your lawn mower blade on the highest setting. Don’t worry if parts of your yard turn brown this time of year – it happens.


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10 Comments on “August Lawn & Garden To-Do List”

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  • Official Comment:


    Thomas Boni Says:
    August 21st, 2018 at 5:32 pm

    Hi, Linda,
    Congratulations on the move! The list should apply nationwide unless otherwise noted.
    For instance, you’ll see notes such as “In zone 8,” and that tip would apply to a certain area. We do recommend checking each month’s full article (in addition to the checklist) for in-depth gardening information, which can include geographic limitations.



  • Linda Follett Says:
    August 17th, 2018 at 8:06 am

    We’ve recently moved from NY to NC. Does the monthly Lawn & Garden To-Do List apply equally in both areas?



  • Delores Fleming Says:
    August 6th, 2016 at 6:49 am

    My problem is that I have these holly sapling growing within my lawn from the roots of my neighbor former holly. I pull up roots that they are growing from but more keep growing. Yes I have hedges of a different style that are space and I would like to put root killer to kill the holly but is afraid that it might spread to my hedges. How can I get rid of this holly that is spreading into my lawn and garden area without destroying my future planting space. Need Help.



  • William Jones Says:
    August 30th, 2014 at 7:02 pm

    I have good solid wood windows, want to put storm windows on the outside of them. I need to reglaze and paint them before installing. Do you think this is a good idea or should I replace the windows instead? I am almost sure the storm windows will have to be ordered, in 1957 when they were installed they were standard windows for the time and area. If I have measured right they will be 36″ X 56″ on the outside. Thank you for any advice given!


  • Official Comment:


    Ben Erickson Says:
    August 25th, 2013 at 12:55 pm

    Hi Virginia,
    Glad to hear you enjoyed our website, come back often!



  • Virginia Carrasco Says:
    August 23rd, 2013 at 9:31 pm

    First time i visit your web site enjoyed it so much new to gardening. Was very informative.



  • Rita Pulaski Says:
    August 25th, 2012 at 6:18 am

    I have a large yard with a good deal of perennials. My problem is most of my plants this year and some of last year are dying from the ground up. The flowers on the top survive on my mums, but my phlox look awful and I keep getting the powdery substance on them. The phlox are near my deck, but the other ones are near my fence. Usually my yard looks great, this year has been a struggle. I even had trouble with my hangers. I found green and red worms eating them and I used sevin to try to rid them, but it did not work.
    Any ideas for Massachusettss bugs?



  • Mary Parker Says:
    August 4th, 2009 at 11:32 am

    I’m in Texas and usualy that is not a bad deal but this year we have had no Rain. Everything is dead. Even the weeds are dying. The thought of a flower garden is wonderful but the Pain of keeping it alive is a very hard thing to imagine. Have you got some Ideas for the poor Texans. Sincerely, Mary Parker



  • WMS Says:
    August 12th, 2008 at 1:29 pm

    I love the photo of the peppers. Great article.



  • jeff-naturehills Says:
    August 1st, 2008 at 4:16 pm

    Your tips are a home run, not a pun because it is baseball season. August can be a long hot month and it is difficult to work in the heat or plan for next spring. But you can’t slack if you are a garden nut like me.


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August Lawn & Garden To-Do List