Extra waterings help, even if a few leaves get scorched.
The record temperatures baking the metro area are taking their toll on plants and greenhouses.
"Plants need water just like people do," Susie Bachman West, of Bachman's Garden Center in Minneapolis, said on Thursday.
This sweltering week, Bachman's workers have pulled out the watering cans and hoses as many as three times a day.
While hearty annuals like petunias, lantana and geraniums can take the heat, the recent weather is too much for many plants, causing the garden center to take extra precautions, Bachman West said.
"You just have to keep an eye on everything," she said. "It's really all hands on deck when we have extreme temperatures."
Showering purple morning glory flowers with water, Chris Smith doesn't remember a time when the weather was "this bad, this many days in a row."
As a part of the watering crew, Smith arrives at Bachman's at 6 a.m. to get in a two-hour watering before the garden opens at 8 a.m., but that's just the first watering.
"You'd think watering on a 100-degree day would be fun, but it's not," he said, although he did admit to cooling off under the watering wand every so often.
Bachman's works to keep its 4.5 acres of perishable plants watered every day, in addition to maintaining appropriate temperatures in coolers that hold cut flowers.
Trying to prevent burning
Farther west, in Wayzata, Three Rivers Park District pickups rolled in to the Noerenberg Memorial Gardens at about 3 p.m. Thursday to give plants there their final drink of the day.
Unrolling hoses and filling up watering cans, about three staffers hand-watered larger planters and flower beds that couldn't be reached by the irrigation system or sprinklers.
"With this much heat, some things have a tendency to get burned," said Anita Volkenaut, a full-time specialist gardener at Noerenberg.
Burning is a result of excess water on the leaves of a plant, which then acts like a magnifying glass, attracting sunlight and heat.
But beyond a few burn marks, Volkenaut said the garden was looking good and it just took a little extra work from those who water.
"Plants are surprisingly hearty, so if they're full-sun plants, they'll be OK," said Nicole Peterson, a Noerenberg Memorial Gardens horticultural intern.
'Plants are remarkable'
Watering consistently, weeding, mulching and being aware of the type of soil you have in your garden are ways Bachman West said any gardener can help their plants thrive.
With the weekend likely to bring lower temperatures -- in the 80s -- a healthier environment for plants may return soon.
"Plants are remarkable," Bachman West said. "As soon as the heat breaks, they're so perky and happy."
Asha Anchan • 612-673-4154