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Early October Garden Tips

It’s still too early to lock up the rakes, shovels, and trowels until spring. The good news – October is a wind-down month in the garden and landscape.
If you haven’t already, bring in any houseplants that enjoyed an outdoor summer vacation. Inspect for any unwanted hitchhikers beforehand.


Frosty forecast? If so, harvest any last warm season vegetables – green tomatoes can be picked and wrapped in newspaper to continue ripening. Don’t be too hasty to harvest cool seasonal crops like cabbage, kale, Brussels sprouts – a light frost helps to improve their taste.

Dig this – dahlias, cannas, and gladiolas need to be dug and stored for the winter months. Once a frost has nipped them back, carefully dig/lift them from the soil, allow them to dry in the sun for a day or two, then store in a cool, frost-free location for the winter months.


Pumpkins, gourds, and Indian corn can be found in our fall market at Heritage Farm & Garden. Buy a few extra pumpkins for carving and pies! Avoid pumpkins and gourds that show signs of bruises; a perfect entry point for fungal problems can turn your Jack-o-lantern into a mushy mess.


Leaf me alone…. wouldn’t it be great if only the trees would get the hint. Yes, it’s leaf season and that means raking. Remember to shred leaves and add them to the compost pile or use as a top dressing of mulch. Two to three inches of mulch is all you need. If you’ve recently reseeded/renovated the lawn, be certain to remove any leaves that can smother the grass…. Easy does it with the rake so you do not dislodge new grass seedlings.

Bare spots in the lawn?  Reseed while the weather is still warm enough to allow for germination.  Keep seeded areas moist, not saturated.


Stinging insects peak during October, and then decline with the onset of colder weather.  If you need to treat the nest, do so after dark.