Many vegetables need the heat of summer to grow and thrive. Tomato seeds do not germinate until the soil has reached 50 to 55 degrees F. Squash of all types mildews easily in damp weather. Other heat-loving vegetables include cucumbers, corn, melons, peppers, eggplants and beans of all types. Carrots and other root vegetables grow in the hot months when they are kept cool with mulch. The big leaves of heat-loving squash provide shade for the tender leaves of lettuce and spinach.
Prepare the soil one week before planting. Incorporate one shovelful of mature compost to each one square foot of soil. Compost adds valuable living organisms that ingest organic materials and transform them into nutrients. Adding compost increases the nutritional value of vegetables, according to The Organic Center.
Plant seeds according to individual instructions on the seed packet. Mist frequently with a hand-held hose until they germinate.
Irrigate growing vegetable plants deeply once a week. In July, August and September vegetables need 2 inches of water per week for best growth.
Mulch plants with a thin layer of straw, newspaper or compost. Mulch keeps the roots cool, controls weeds and reduces watering needs.
Apply a handful of compost as a side-dressing monthly to each vegetable plant. Nutrient-rich compost enables vegetables to resist disease and harmful insect infestations more easily.