Fall Gardening for DIY'ers Fall Gardening for DIY'ers

Fall's a great time for gardeners. Sure most of the plant have stopped blooming and you know winter's on the way, but doing some gardening on a sunny fall day is a great way to enjoy the weather and get some exercise (and there are no any insects to bug you). If you're wondering what you should around your garden this fall, here's some suggestion that will help make year's garden even better.

Clean out this years crop

  • Your first step should be to weed and clean out this years crop. If you don't have one already, now's the time to start a compost pile for all your dead annuals and vegetables. Be careful not to put weeds into your compost because the seeds could survive the winter and you'll end up adding weeds to next years garden.
  • While cleaning out your garden it's opportunity to dig in soil amendments (fertilizer, peat moss , lime) so your garden soil will be ready for next years planting.

Plan for next year

  • Fall is the time to start planning for next year. Think about what worked and what didn't this year and put together your garden plan for next year. Whether it's adding new plants or shrubs, splitting and relocating perennials or changing the layout of your garden, now is the time to plan it..

Now you've got your plan - start to implement it

  • Fall is a great time to plant new evergreens, perennials and even deciduous shrubs (plus you can probably get them for a good price from the garden center). Just be sure to give them lots of water so the root systems can get a good foothold. The evergreens particularly need lots of moisture to hold them through the cold winter.
  • You may need to protect your new shrubs and small trees from mice or rabbits over the winter. Putting up a fence of hardware cloth or chicken wire held in place with wooden stakes should be enough to keep the animals away.
  • Fall is also the time to plant your spring bulbs. Be sure to plant them deep so squirrels won't feed on them during the winter. You could even take a chance and spread some seeds of hardy annuals (cosmos, poppies) where you want them to grow next year since seeds sown in the fall will often take root and bloom next spring.

Don't forget, your lawn is part of your garden

  • Rake up leaves as they fall onto your lawn and keep cutting it until the snow falls because long grass provides an ideal environment for grass fungus' to grow.
  • Run your lawnmower over the piles of leaves and you can use them as mulch around your plants or put them into your compost pile where they will break down over the winter and give you a ready supply of 'garden gold' next spring.
  • Spreading a fall fertilizer and perhaps a broadleaf weed killer will keep your grass healthy and strong during the winter.
Murray Anderson is a veteran freelancer whose work has been appeared in books, newspapers and newsletters as well as on numerous web sites in both the United States and Canada. He writes on a wide range of topics including home, consumer, and personal subjects as well as general business and Marketing specific topics.

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