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Fall to Winter Garden Tips

  • Here's a few more tips from Yvonne Savio

    Transplant Cole Crops Deeply

    Cabbage-family plants like broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, and kohlrabi tend to flop over or get leggy below their first leaves, so transplant them deeper than they were growing -- up to the first set of leaves -- so they'll be firmly established in the soil and can support their tops better.

    Don't Trim Green Asparagus Ferns

    Wait to cut asparagus ferns until they've turned completely brown, generally after the first hard frost. By then, they've reabsorbed all their energy back into the crowns for next year's edible shoots. Cutting them sooner means removing this recycled nutrition. Trim the fronds at soil level rather than yanking them from the crown to avoid injuring the crowns.

    Pick Citrus When You'll Eat It

    Leave citrus fruit on the trees until you want to eat it. Many varieties become sweeter the longer they're left on the tree.

    Trim Roses Lightly

    Discontinue watering and feeding roses, and mulch roses with manure and compost. Prune them lightly to remove the long, bloomed-out canes. Save hard pruning until January, when plants are fully dormant. Severe pruning now will encourage new growth which will freeze with the first frosts, wasting all that plant energy.

    Give Lawns a Slow-Release Feeding

    Fertilize lawns with slow-release nitrogen for gradual, consistent feeding all winter long. Continue to mow the lawn as long as it is still growing. This encourages branching of individual grass plants for a thicker, healthier lawn that chokes out weeds. Rake leaves off the lawn to allow air, light, and fertilizer to reach the soil surface.