Your plants are too lovely to neglect while you're gone. Aren't they?

We all want to take a break during the summer heat. But you have put a lot of energy, time and money into creating potted gardens, so you can’t just let them suffer while you’re on vacation. Therefore, take some actions to help them live through your absence:

• Check your drip system before you go. Be sure each pot is getting enough water, and that all batteries have been replaced.

• If your pots are not on drip, consider putting them on a system while you are away. Just be sure they are not going to get too much water.

• Whether your plants are on drip or not, have someone check your home for you while you are away. If you need someone to water for you, be sure they understand HOW to water. (See the article from June 4, and print it out!)

• I often set up what I call “orphan lines” on my irrigation: When I leave for a period of time, I can put pots that I typically hand-water on the drip system.

Marylee is the Desert’s Potted Garden Expert. Email her with comments and questions at