Prepare your Garden for Fall



If you are feeling a little tired from the summer heat, think of how the heat affected your garden. This year the summer has brought higher temperatures in many areas. As summer ends it is time to look at your garden and determine what it needs to keep it looking beautiful. It is time to harvest any remaining vegetables. It is also time to consider what and how much you will plant next season. Did your tomatoes and zucchini plants give you so much that you had to share veggies with friends and neighbors? Did your garden provide you with the harvest that you expected? How can you improve or decrease your harvest next season? Have your crops stopped producing? If so, it is time to start the end of summer clean up in your vegetable beds. Summer can be unpredictable at the best of times and this year we are enjoying an ongoing heat wave of epic proportions and as the summer ends, it is time to think about some pre-winter gardening. Prepare your flowers, trees, and shrubs for winter by doing some important jobs before autumn.

You will have a winter gold mine in your garden if you start winter crops this and next month. In winter, you will save money at the supermarket if you plant winter vegetables crops now. As adding a layer of mulch around your plants will deter the growth of weeds. In addition, mulch will insulate the soil and protect the roots of your plant from the winter weather so they will survive until spring. While you are pulling out summer plants that are wilting, you should continue mulching your soil. Mulching the soil helps control weeds. Types of mulch that you can purchase include Shredded Hardwood, Wood Chips, Bark, Nuggets, and Compost. A garden expert can suggest the right organic or inorganic mulch based on your soil and garden needs.

Here are a few of the advantages of these diverse types of mulch. Shredded hard woods come in a variety of colors, are easy to spread and hold up on slopes. The disadvantage of this type of mulch is that it can compact, keeping water and nutrients away from your plants. Wood Chips, Bark and Nuggets are durable, long lasting, and easy to apply to the soil. Cocoa Shells have a rich look and are light weight. Compost is often homemade and free if you make your own compost. Adding compost to the soil adds nutrients and holds water to the soil. The most expensive types of mulch are stone, crushed gravel, and cocoa shells. The least expensive is compost because you can do DIY however compost does not do a particularly excellent job of keeping out weeds.