Extreme heat forces Kansas nursery to give away plants, flowers

HAYSVILLE, Kan. (KSNW) –¬†Horticulture officials said many plants and flowers are suffering because of the recent hot weather.

“We fill the bucket to the rim,” said Jeannie Keiter.

Just as Jeannie Keiter, the owner of Haysville’s Keiter Nursery and Landscape, fills one flower-pot with water, she moves onto the next.

“It’s a vicious cycle,” said Keiter.

However, it’s a cycle gardeners like Allen Barnett and Keiter said is a must during the summer months, especially with the recent scorching temperatures.

“Water, water, water! Water in the morning and water late in the evening,” said Allen Barnett.

Barnett said he had to put a layer of straw on top of his flowers and plants to help protect them from the heat.

“The straw is the best thing to protect the garden, then you don’t have to water it as much and it gives it that cool barrier, keeps it from drying up,” Barnett said.

While Keiter said she has also done a number of things to protect her plants and flowers, the hot weather has destroyed some of them.

“It has burned them up,” she said.

Keiter said the heat has caused many of her flowers to droop and some of them to die.

“Frustrating. I wish there was something I could do to make it better so they could have a longer life,” Keiter said.

The business woman said the heat has forced her to slash her prices and offer some of her items for free.

“I’d rather give them away than throw them away. If somebody can put them in their yard or their pots and get them pretty for a while, then we are good,” she said.

KSN asked Keiter what the free items may do for her business. She said she is concerned she will lose out on some much-needed income.

“I feel like I’m losing money,” Keiter said.

While Keiter admits times may be tough right now, she said she is optimistic the Kansas weather will play in her favor sometime soon.

“We do our best, you know,” she said.

There are some ways to protect plants from the heat. Officials said early morning watering will help keep the roots hydrated. People can also use a cloth to shade plants from direct sunlight.

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