Regional Gardening Reports :: National Gardening Association

Pacific Northwest

November, 2001
Regional Report

Prune Raspberries

After everbearing raspberries have finished fruiting, remove old canes at ground level or cut off the bearing tips of this summer's growth. The bottoms of these canes will bear the spring crop of raspberries, and new fall-bearing canes will come from the crown. Remove plant debris including old canes and fallen leaves to prevent disease organisms from overwintering.

Add Lime

Soils in the Northwest tend to be acidic, so periodic liming is needed to keep the pH at the optimum 6 to 6.5 range for most plants. Depending on the results of a soil test, spread lime with a lawn spreader, using the powdered or pelleted forms. If your soil needs magnesium as well as lime, use dolomitic limestone.

Start Feeding the Birds

Clean birdfeeders and fill them before natural seeds and berries are gone. A constant source of food will keep birds visiting all winter long. The best locations for feeders are in trees for protection from the weather and near shrubs for cover. Birds also need water, so keep the bird bath filled with fresh water through the winter months.

Propagate African Violets

African violets make great houseplants and will flower year around if given supplemental light. To propagate new plants, take a leaf cutting, dip the cut end in a rooting hormone powder and stick the cutting in a pot filled with vermiculite or sand. Cover the pot with a perforated clear plastic bag and keep the soil moist. In a few weeks you'll have new plants.

Organize Your Tools

Fall is a good time to clean and organize your garden storage area. Take everything out, oil wooden handles, sharpen blades, clean hand tools, and wash pots. Then store everything neatly with summer tools to the back and early spring potting supplies up front. Life will be a lot easier without the frustration of searching for tools next spring!


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