Late Summer Gardening Tips
How to prepare your garden before winter with these helpful late summer gardening tips.
The end of summer doesn’t mean the end of the gardening season. There are still plenty of productive and enjoyable things you can do this fall. Whether planting new bulbs, shrubs, and saplings, harvesting winter-proof vegetables, or sharpening those blades and getting reorganized, there’s no better time to get outdoors and get growing.
Veg out this fall.
Even when temperatures dip down to 25 degrees, spinach, kale, leeks, and broccoli are some nutritious and delicious options that can withstand light frost. Even cabbage, which is high in beta-carotene, vitamins C and K and fiber, is a prime choice for your garden—and your next Oktoberfest celebration! Sauerkraut anyone?
Thank you very mulch.
Your garden will certainly appreciate a little mulching to help maintain its soil quality. Use grass clippings, leaves, straw, and even weeds (as long as those nagging plants have no seeds.) Mulch is also a great way to protect your perennials from frost after the ground freezes.
What’s the deal?
Many garden centers and nurseries offer significant discounts on gardening tools, plants, and seeds this time of year. Take advantage of their unsold stock and replenish your own with savings that are sure to pay dividends next spring. Keep seeds fresh by placing them in the freezer. And house your discounted seedlings indoors until the warmer weather arrives.
Divide and conquer.
Fall is prime time for revitalizing your perennials. Some larger perennials just aren’t as productive, so start dividing them by digging up the plants at the drip line and slicing them down the center. When you replant, spread them out evenly—choosing the healthiest plants first. Keep them watered, but don’t over do it. Repeat the same process in the spring for those perennials that bloom in late summer or early fall.
Change your bulbs.
A little effort in the fall will bring colorful rewards next spring. Crocuses, daffodils, tulips, irises, and hyacinths, are just a few spring-blooming bulbs you may want to consider. Plant them root-end down in a sunny location with decent drainage. Be sure to water them regularly throughout the season and add some protective mulch when the ground freezes. (PS: Fall is also a great time to plant trees and shrubs—hurry, before the first frost!)