Fall is finally here and I’ve about wrapped up all of the work I have to do in my garden to get things ready for winter. It’s been a crazy few months as my weekends have been full of fall gardening chores! As I was working outside, it occurred to me that everyone knows that fall garden clean up is a must, but not everyone knows the right way to do it. And most people might commit a mistake that they might not even know about. Here’s how to avoid the fall gardening mistakes that could ruin your gardening come Spring.
Though it is necessary to trim away any diseased or dead branches from your plants, this is all the pruning that is required in the fall. Do not deadhead perennial shrubs in the Fall, as this could be extremely detrimental to the bushes. In fact, pruning a bush that flowers in the fall could end up killing the plant before they even get a chance to bloom again. I recommend always pruning within the first few weeks of Spring, after the last frost, of course!
I know, I know. Those cheap end-of-season prices at the nursery can get the best of us, but it’s best to just ignore the temptation altogether. Just because they are available for a fraction of the price doesn’t mean that they’re a good investment. These plants will die off in only a few more weeks, anyway. Instead, save your money for all of the good stuff come Spring.
Get your Spring bulbs into the ground before the ground freezes and becomes impossible to dig through. Additionally, the best bulbs always go fast when selling at a nursery, so make sure that you pick up your bulbs before all of the good ones are gone. I recommend spending your money on bulbs instead of other plants and shrubs. Buying bulbs earlier will also ensure that they are the healthiest ones available for your garden.
Tons of dead plants in your garden for extended periods of time can be a breeding ground for insects, which could cause a major pest problem come Spring. Clean up your garden and prevent pests in the fall by removing dead plants as soon as they die off. Leaving them to sit (if even for just a few days!) can cause insects to really take to the plant. No one wants that! This is one of the biggest fall gardening mistakes.
Leaving soil bare can wreak havoc on your garden come to Springtime. Leaving soil bare makes your garden beds the perfect place for weeds to take root. And no one REALLY likes to weed. To prevent tons of weeds come Spring, make sure that you cover your soil with a layer of mulch in the fall. After the mulch has been added, top things off with a layer of dried straw.