September came and with it the pre-Fall weather. If you were caught off guard by the change in temperatures and were hoping to get a few more months out of your garden, here are some tips to help you prepare it for Fall.

Collect seed and herbs for drying

If you have been growing heirloom plants from seeds, fall is the time to collect seeds from both flowering and kitchen garden plants. For this you need to avoid harvesting a few fruits and flowers and instead let them ripen or dry out on the plant.

Soil Amendment & Mulch

Determine which bare areas could use soil amendment and new plants. Add mulch where necessary.


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Out With the Old, In With the New

Replace summer annuals in window boxes and garden beds with cool-weather flowers. Dig up any bulb plants that aren't hardy in your zone. This is also the perfect opportunity to plant new trees and shrubs, giving them at least six weeks to root and grow before the first frost.

Examine Perennials

You should also examine all the perennials in your garden for signs of disease. Look for spotted leaves or rotting stems and either apply treatment, prune the branch, or remove the plant before the disease spreads to healthy plants in the vicinity.


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Prepare for Cold Weather

To prepare your garden for chillier weather (if you are not replanting cold-weather plants), you'll want to:
  • weed the garden
  • deadhead faded blooms
  • divide overgrown plants
  • dig up non-hardy bulbs for winter storage
  • remove spent annuals
  • amend soil (bare spots or where you've removed annuals) and add needed mulch
  • add compost and peat moss to prepare soil for Spring planting
Remove Herbs

Either bring potted herbs indoors before the weather becomes too cool or move to a warmer spot and you will be able to enjoy fresh herbs for a longer period of time. Simply move the pots to a warm corner of the porch that gets some sunlight and is somewhat protected!


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Happy gardening!

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