Regional Gardening Reports :: National Gardening Association


November, 2000
Regional Report

Late-Season Lawn Mowing

As long as the fall lawn keeps growing, you should keep mowing. When the growth rate slows, make one last cut for the year. And make it a close one, lowering the mower blade, since shorter grass is less likely to develop disease problems during the winter.

Install Tree Wraps

Wrap the lower trunks of young, thin-barked trees such as maples to protect them from winter freeze and thaw damage, or sun scald. Use a flexible, breathable, biodegradable wrap placed snuggly but not tight enough to bind or constrict the bark. In spring remove the wrap and let the bark breathe.

Fertilize Trees and Shrubs Late

Fall is one of the best times to fertilize trees and shrubs based on a soil test. Wait until after the leaves have fallen, then apply the fertilizer. The roots will continue to take up nutrients as long as the soil stays warm right up until the ground freezes and provide trees and shrubs a jump-start for next spring.

Plant the Last Bulbs

Continue planting spring-blooming bulbs such as tulips until the ground freezes. Remember to dig a generous hole for each bulb, loosening the soil at the bottom of the hole and adding a high-phosphorous fertilizer. After planting, cover the bulbs and water generously to settle the soil and encourage the bulbs to root. Get them planted now because they will not hold until next year.

Clean the Vineyard

It\'s time to clean up grape vines. Once frosts have killed the foliage, remove and destroy any mummified berries as well as old leaves from the vines and ground. Cleaning up now will reduce the chance of pests and diseases reappearing next year.


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