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Fall is here, and while you may be winding down in the garden, I’m not quite ready to throw in the towel. This is a wonderful time to embrace the changing season and enjoy in its bounty.
While it’s best to leave most of the garden pruning and cleanup until winter or spring, that doesn’t mean you can’t have some fun now!
The first thing I love to do is plant vegetables in my container garden for some late fall bounty. I like to fill one container with multiple types of lettuces and greens—it looks like a bouquet of flowers and provides enough produce for the weeks to come. I use a variety of leafy lettuces in different colors, and kale and chard as well. You can also plant hardy herbs such as rosemary and thyme in preparation for your Thanksgiving feast!
I also enjoy fall foliage and colors, so I like to plant perennials that have berries and winter color to provide some variation in my summer garden, and to attract some feathered friends to feast in the colder months. It’s a good time to plant in the fall. I like Black Chokeberry, Bittersweet, Cranberry Bush Viburnum and Beautyberry. They introduce some new color to my environment and make the birds very happy! Just be diligent about watering to get the plants established. A sturdy hose reel makes a difference. I use the AquaWinder® Auto Rewind Hose Reel because it looks great and allows me to make use of the excess water left in the hose for my new plants.
No fall garden scape is complete without mums, cabbages, asters and pansies. I mix mine with pumpkins and gourds and try to plant/place them near the entrances to the house as a warm greeting to visitors, especially around Halloween. You can also use hay bales or corn stalks for added texture and height.
Once you finish with your fall gardening, be sure to gather and clean all your tools. You should wipe down furniture, clean dirt from tools, oil metal parts to prevent rust, disconnect hoses and store everything in a cool dry place like your garage or shed. Cleaning and stowing tools in one place will help when Spring rolls around. In colder climates, wash and store ceramic and terra cotta pots in a cool, dry place where they won't freeze and crack. Your plastic pots can be left out and used for fall and winter arrangements. I really love my Suncast Mystic® planters. They stand up to the elements and retain moisture much better than clay pots. And they come in a set of two—the perfect accompaniment to my front entrance!