Gardening is Possible in the Fall and Winter
As the autumn leaves start falling, you may be looking out your window at your garden and thinking the season is gone. Quite the opposite is true! You can still have a bountiful garden in the fall and winter months with a little planning and prep work.
Do your Homework
Before you get your knees dirty, do some research. Find out when the first and last frost dates are in your region. This is important, as you don’t want to plant seeds that will be wiped away at the first sign of cold. The Old Farmer’s Almanac has a great tool for you to easily find out.
Think Beyond the Garden Itself
Figure out what you want to plant, and go beyond veggies. Fall is a good time to plant bulbs, perennials, trees and shrubs (for most of the country) to spruce up your entire lawn. The National Gardening Association (NGA) says this is because the soil is still warm even though the air is cooler – creating the perfect environment for new plants (and it’s not as muddy as it is in spring).
Experts say fall is a great time to try some new vegetables and experiment in your garden. Mother Earth News suggests setting aside space for arugula, Chinese cabbage or mâche (corn salad). You could also try other Asian greens that thrive in fall temps. Perhaps you can also give window farming a try.
No matter what, not everything lasts in the winter. So while you’re out planting your fall crops, think ahead to winter. The NGA has a few more tips like cutting back your perennial flowers to the ground, and digging up tender summer bulbs like dahlias and cannas.
The Climate Prediction Center says winter will be on the mild side again this year, so now’s the time to experiment and try new things in your garden before the snow starts to fly! Share your gardening tips here!
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