Early Fall Gardening Tips

There’s no mistaking it…. Fall is in the air. If the cooler weather has restored your energy and interest, here’s a list to keep you from ‘falling’ behind in your gardening chores.

Did you fall for planting yet?  The ‘Fall is for Planting’ campaign reminds us that fall is an ideal time to plant trees, shrubs, perennials, and bulbs. Take advantage of this time to renovate or add to your landscape. Fall planting on Long Island is favored by long, mild falls with usually adequate rain. Also, soil temperatures remain favorable for root growth. Another plus for fall planting: plants have finished flowering and/or fruiting so they can concentrate on root growth.

Houseplants become houseplants again – it’s time to move them back indoors in late September.  Do some careful inspections before you bring plants inside: check the leaves (remember to look at the undersides as well) and remove any that appear troubled.

Fall is the ideal time to bed out pansies and violas. Some people think they are just for spring planting.  Plant in the fall and they’ll provide double-duty – color now and color again in the spring.  Consider a mulch of pine boughs for winter protection from snow and freezing temperatures.

Don’t wait until spring to tackle broadleaved weeds in the home lawn. Herbicides can be used according to label directions; read carefully if you’ve recently reseeded.

It’s time to think of spring – spring flowering bulbs that is!  Remember, you plant in the fall to enjoy the splendor of daffodils, crocus and tulips in the spring.  Buy early; store in a cool, well-ventilated area until ready to plant.