The Fall Cleanup!!!

1.  Bring in houseplants that have summered outdoors.  Bring them in when night temperatures consistently fall into the lower 50s.  Try to avoid abrupt changes in light and temperature.  Check for insects prior to bringing them inside; washing the plant with plain water will remove many pests.  Re-pot if plant has outgrown its container.  Some plants that have grown vigorously outside may need some pruning.

2.  Clean up vegetable and annual flowerbeds.  Harvest all usable vegetables and annuals before frost.  Leftover debris can be tilled into soil or placed in compost pile.  Clean up weeds as they can harbor diseases and insects.  Add compost and other organic material to enrich the soil.  Mulch beds to prevent erosion during the winter.

3.  Clean up perennial flowerbeds.  Remove weeds.  After a few frosts, mulch the perennial beds.  Plants can be cut back now or in early spring.  New perennials can be planted in the fall;  established perennials can be divided.  These activities should be done in early fall to allow time for plants to root before the soil cools.

4.  Tree and shrub maintenance

Prune trees before they go dormant or in early spring.

Prune late summer and fall flowering shrubs after they go dormant.

DO NOT prune evergreens or spring flowering shrubs in fall.

Trees and shrubs can be fertilized after they go dormant or in the spring.

5.  Miscellaneous

Plant spring flowering bulbs in early fall.

Clean garden tools so they will be ready for next season.

Drain and store garden hoses.