Its only July, and the sun is blazing hot. But now is the time to start planning your fall gardening. August will be here in a matter of weeks, and that is when you need to plant many fall crops.
Here are some tips to keep you busy over the next few months:
Grow a Fall Garden. In many places across the country, mid-August through mid-September is the time to plant your Fall Garden. Crops to consider for the Fall include lettuce, radishes, beets, leeks, onions, rutabaga, cabbage, Chinese cabbage (examples: Napa cabbage, bok choy), kohlrabi, turnip greens, mustard greens, collard greens, spinach, and kale. The exact timing of your planting will depend on the crops you want, and your plant hardiness zone (your local agricultural extension office can help you with that).
Plant Garlic Bulbs. September is the time to plant garlic bulbs for next year. Consider planting a couple of interesting varieties from the Seed Savers Exchange.
Harvest Apples. Many areas have u-pick apple orchards. A visit to one would make for a fun and useful way to spend a Saturday afternoon. You can also visit your local farmers' market or attend one of the many small town apple festivals that are typically held in September or early October.
Pick Nuts. September through November is the time to harvest pecans and black walnuts.
Plant Trees and Shrubs. Fall is a great time to plant most trees and shrubs.
Start Composting and Improving Your Soil. See my earlier article on Composting and Vermiculture.
Start Making Your Lasagna Garden. Now is a great time to mark off your lasagna-garden beds for next year, lay down the newspaper and use the falling leaves and yard waste in the layers.
Start Building Your Raised Garden Beds. Raised-bed gardening is a relatively easy and very productive method of gardening. Get a jump on next year by building your raised-beds this fall.
Grow Indoor Herbs. Many herbs, such as chives, oregano, basil, mint, and rosemary, can be grown in pots indoors during the fall and winter.
Transplant Perennials. Fall is the best time to divide and transplant most perennials.
Order Seed Catalogs. Don't forget to request seed catalogs for next year from your favorite companies. You can spend the winter months thumbing through the catalogs and dreaming big dreams.
Good Luck and Happy Gardening!
Great intro to raised bed gardening. 4.5 stars on Amazon.
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