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- Autumn Planting
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Autumn Planting Tips
Autumn is the perfect time to plant shrubs, perennials, spring-blooming bulbs, trees and cool-season vegetables. The cooler air temperature is easier not only on plants but also on you.
Since the ground is still warm, roots can grow until the soil freezes. Autumn also has more good days for planting shrubs and you'll have more time for gardening. Moreover, garden centres are usually trying to sell the last of their stock before winter so you can get the plants at bargain prices.
You also don't need to worry about plant diseases and pests or even fertiliser in the fall. Fertiliser promotes fresh growth that can be nipped by the harsh winter weather. So you should stop fertilising your crops by late summer. Here are some of the best options for autumn planting.
The still-warm temperatures and cool weather provide the roots with enough time to grow. When you plant in autumn, make sure to get rid of spent flowers to keep the soil damp and prevent the plant from using its energy to set seeds. When the ground freezes, you should mulch plants to prevent alternate melting and freezing cycles.
Shrubs and Trees
Remember to plant shrubs and trees at their usual soil lines. Newly planted shrubs and trees should be watered until the soil freezes. This is done in order for them to have a good jump-start before going into complete inactivity during the winter season.
Brussels sprouts, cabbage, spinach, kohlrabi, broccoli, carrots, radishes, Swiss chard and kale grow well in cool weather. You should plant fall-harvested crops in early August to provide them with enough time to mature.
Read the seed packet to know how many days it would take until the seeds mature. Count backwards from the frost date to give the seeds enough time. Greens that mature early such as lettuce can be planted late in the season.
You can prolong the growing season by planting the crops under cold frames or floating row covers. These will protect them from frost but still allow water, air and light to enter.
The perfect time for transplanting irises is early fall. Plant and transplant peonies in the fall, but remember not to plant them too deep or they will not bloom. Fall-planted perennials should be watered properly until the soil freezes to keep their roots strong and healthy. Make sure the perennials get at least 1 inch of water one time every week.