It's that time of year again. The season is ending now that most of the harvesting is done. There are still some things to do, though. Autumn gardening tasks benefit your garden's overall health and ease the workload for the next planting season. Plus, it's much cooler outside, so the work isn't nearly as challenging.
Plant More Veggies!
Now is a great time to plant some cool-weather crops. Beets, kale, lettuce, parsley, and spinach all love cool temperatures. Plant them now, and you will have fresh vegetables for months. Even if they don't reach full maturity, you can harvest the tops of many as greens.
This is the best time to plant shrubs, perennials, and trees because they like the cooler air combined with the still warm soil.
Improve The Soil
Add compost and mulch to build up a rich, nutrient-dense canvas for next year's plants. Mulching will keep in moisture and reduce weeds, so don't skip it. Compost and mulches break down over time and will improve the soil for years.
Remove the dead or diseased parts of your plants and trees. Pruning stimulates new bud growth and improves the look of the trees. Don't remove more than 1/3 of a plant when pruning. Not all plants or trees need pruning. Please do your research on each one before getting out the clippers.
Plan Next Years' Garden
Assess how your garden did this year. What successes and failures did you experience? Plan now for next year while these successes and failures are still fresh in your mind. Be sure to take note of the varieties that thrived and those that struggled.
Draw out a rough plan of next year's garden, marking where you'd like to plant each item and how much of each one. This will make next years' seed ordering and spring gardening marathon go much smoother!