October Garden Check List

Plan
• Think about increasing your garden growing space next season.
• Make note of the winners and losers: which varieties performed abundantly?
• Save seeds from late harvest vegetables such as squash, gourds, pumpkins.

Prepare and maintain
• Leave some pretty black eyed Susan and ornamental grass seed heads and pods for fall and winter interest.
• Go through the garden once more and clean up and remove any “tired” plants or plants you didn’t love. Make a note, what would have been terrific in that spot? If you are planting plants you just found on sale, carefully untangle their roots, and get them growing.
• Give all the perennials beds a thorough watering before the ground freezes.
• Wait until ground is frozen to apply winter mulch.
• Root prune shrubs you are planning to move next spring. With a sharp shovel, cut down around the outer edges of the shrub, i.e., along the drip line. Bring indoor shrubs back inside before the first frost. Clean pots of all insects and inspect the plants before you bring them in.
• Tie up loose-branched evergreens to prevent them from spreading apart under heavy snow
• If you have an automated sprinkler system, prepare it for the winter.
• Keep the cool-weather crops (newly planted cabbages, onions, lettuces) thinned and properly watered. Cover if necessary on cold nights.
• Leave the roots of beans and pea plants in the soil, so their nitrogen nodules can enrich the soil. Compost the vines and leaves.
• Discard the vines of cucumbers and summer squash. They may be contaminated with mildew or other diseases you don’t want to carry over in the compost pile.
• Check pumpkins and squash, and turn them or elevate them on twigs or cardboard to keep them from rotting on the bottom.
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• Sow and plant

• Plant garlic cloves now before the soil freezes.
• As the frost settles in, there is little to be planted outside in the garden. Gather your seeds. and equipment for windowsill gardens.
• Dig and store all root crops—parsnips, carrots, kohlrabi—before the ground freezes solid.

Harvest
• Allium family (shallots, garlic, onions, scallions)
• Broccoli
• Brussels sprouts
• Cabbage
• Carrots
• Cauliflower
• Grapes
• Herbs (heartiest)
• Pumpkins & Winter Squash
• Raspberries (late bearing)
• Sunflower seeds
• Winter squash

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