Summer is gone and fall is well upon us. So what do you need to be doing in your garden to prepare it for next year? Well we have some tips to get you started on your October gardening tasks.
Once you have had two or three hard frosts you will want to take pruning shears and clip back all the stems and foliage on your herbaceous perennials.
After a few more frosts you should add mulch to your perennial flower garden. One inch of mulch will help the soil to retain moisture and protect the roots.
Plant any spring flowering bulbs.
Sit down and make notes of which plants did best in your garden and which plants seemed to have trouble thriving. You can use the winter months to do research and determine what needs to be done about the plants that had problems, this can help you decide what you want in your garden next year.
Remove diseased or insect ridden plants from your garden. This will keep the disease from spreading to other plants and if the insect affected plants have eggs, etc. in them then disposing of these plants will help to control the insect problem for next year.
If it hasn't frosted already, then you will want to pick all of your tomatoes before it does. Pick them even if they are not yet ripe. If you aren't planning on eating all of the ripe ones right away you can freeze them for future use. The unripe tomatoes need to be hung upside down if you have picked them with the entire plant, if not then you can store them in a brown paper bag in a cool dark area to help their ripening process.