- Author: Lanie Keystone
It's not too early to start thinking about your spring garden in November. It's such a busy “indoor” month with all the holidays fast approaching. So, a bit of planning will keep our gardens healthy as we begin to shop, cook, decorate and celebrate and reap happy dividends in the spring.
Here are some key things to put on your “to-do” list for November gardening:
- Finish cleaning up the vegetable garden
- Store garden supplies, including pots, where they've been summering near your beds. That's where snails will want to cozy down for the winter and then be uninvited guests in the spring
- Mulch un-planted vegetable beds with leaves or straw to prevent weeds—unless you have planted a cover crop or cool-season vegetable garden earlier in the fall
- Why mulch? It helps keep your soil from eroding, crusting or compacting during winter rains…it's another “glad I did this” when spring arrives!
- Watch your container plants perched under patio roofs or eaves—it's easy to forget to water these places where winter rains can't reach
- Water only as needed: reduce the watering frequency as the weather cools
- Turn off your sprinkler controller once winter rains have begun
- Keep an eye and ear out for frost forecasts
- Know the cold tolerance of your plants
- Plan ahead with stakes in the ground for frost covers
- Cover subtropical plants, succulents, and young citrus with frost cloth, old sheets or large cardboard boxes before sunset to help retain ground heat and remove during the day
- Hint: Coverings should not contact plant leaves and need to go to all the way to the ground
- Keep tender, in-ground and container plants well-watered—moist soil holds more heat than dry soil, keeps the humidity higher and helps protect against frost burn—(moisture being pulled from foliage)
BLOOMS & BORDERS
- Fall planting opportunities are just about over
- Plant newly purchased trees, perennials, shrubs, and ground covers well before you start cooking that turkey
- Finish planting bulbs
With those simple garden tasks complete, you can start planning your holiday menus, make your gift list and even have time to sit back and enjoy the beautiful fall season.
“Autumn is the mellower season, and what we lose in flowers we more than gain in fruits.” Samuel Butler