Wednesday, October 5, 2011

October Calendar

Give a weekly soaking to all shrubs and trees planted this year.  Keep this up until frost.
If you are planting after a dry spell, water well.
Order Now for Fall

Spring bulbs in city gardens will benefit from mulch, more so on rooftops than on the ground.  On rooftops bulbs will pop up too early when sunny days in late winter thaw the ground unexpectedly early.  
You can plant most trees in the fall, except the ones you can’t --  Magnolia, Dogwood and Birches. 

Mulch newly planted trees and shrubs with several inches of leaves, but hold off doing the same to perennials until there have been a few good frosts. 
Vines Can be Unexpectedly Abundant

Evaluate the shape and structure of your principal deciduous plants before it gets too cold, and before you have forgotten what the smaller flowering plants keeping them company look like.  Keep good notes so that you will be able to order new plants early in the spring.  

Although snapdragons and petunias are at their best right now, it’s time to start cutting back everything else.
Start to cut perennials down, but mark their locations with weatherproof plant labels.  Better still, draw up a plan.  Then you may contemplate your spring purchases indoors where it’s warm.   
Last Hurrah for a City Windowbox

Order lilies now so that you have them for November planting.  The same holds true for amaryllis and paperwhite narcissus. 

Tie up roses.  Don’t cut back canes now, but do remove weak shoots and dead wood.
Continue planting bulbs.  
Order enough mulching compost, even if you have to have it delivered.
Time to Re-assess

Fall is the best time of year to reassess your garden design.  The weather is warm enough to take notes without having to take your gloves off, and the memories of successes and failures are still fresh.  If a new plant has not performed to your expectations, give it another year or two to take hold.  A poor freshman performance should not be a death sentence.  

1 comment:

  1. Ellen Brown in ProvidenceOctober 9, 2011 at 11:55 AM

    While drawing a plan of perennials is always a good idea, I take pictures with my digital camera each week during the growing season. That way I can remember relative plant heights as well as locations, so in the spring if I need to replace a plant I know how tall it should be.