How Does Your Garden Grow

Fall has arrived. The humidity has finally dropped and there’s a chill in the air. It’s time to tuck your garden in for a long winter sleep. We have put together a check list to help you accomplish this task.

  1. Remove dead plants and weeds before they seed. Clean leaves from around shrubs to avoid pests.
  2. Raise your mower blades to encourage root growth. Mow a thin layer of leaves into small pieces and leave on lawn. Patch bare areas of your lawn with grass seeds. Aerate high traffic areas.
  3. Plant spring-blooming plants like daffodils, hyacinths and tulips a few weeks before the ground freezes so they have time to adjust to their new home.
  4. Divide perennials like irises, hostas and daylilies. Retain as many roots as possible for more resilient plants.
  5. Pull up annuals. Dig up tender bulbs like cannas and dahlias. Clean and store in a cool dry place.
  6. Start a new tree or shrub while the soil is still warm enough for roots to grow. (Evergreens do better when planted in the spring.) Water well for a week or two to encourage root growth.
  7. Add 4 to 5 inches of mulch like bark bites or
    chopped leaves around new perennials and frost-tender plants for insulation. Keep it from touching trunks to avoid disease and rot.
  8. Stop deadheading perennials in early fall. Above ground growth provides food for birds and other wildlife.
  9. Wrap tender plants like camelias in burlap to protect them from low temperatures, wind and snow.
  10. Take cuttings from plants like geraniums, coleus and sweet potato vine. Apply rooting hormone and place indoors in soil or water in a sunny spot.
  11. Prune plants, trees and shrubs that have over-grown their space and thin out branches if they are crowded only when the weather has cooled, and the leaves have fallen. Earlier, if the weather is warm, they might sprout new growth that would be susceptible to frostbite.
  12. Don’t fertilize until early spring and summer.
  13. Clean and organize garden tools. Drain hoses and irrigation tubing. Empty clay containers and store.

Here are a few mail order catalogues we like:
Van Engelen Inc. Dutch bulbs at great prices.
Cricket Hill Garden for peonies.
Native Wildflowers Nursery