Summer isn’t over yet, but it’s time to start thinking about Autumn in the garden. A little prep now will keep things looking their best well into the next season, and lay a solid foundation for an even more beautiful, sustainable garden next spring. It’s harvest time, so there will be a lot of work to do in your vegetable garden, but there’s also a lot of planning that can be done sitting in your favorite chair and enjoying a cool drink in your summer garden.
- First things first – check those bird feeders! Provide a little something extra for your local feathery friends to keep them coming back for more all winter long (or at least until they migrate).
- Take a look around. While your garden is in its summertime glory, look for areas that need changing or improving. Think about what you want to do next year – how about a butterfly garden? Start making lists.
- Got tulips? Start thinking about what spring bulbs you want to plant and shopping around for them. Most bulbs, including tulips and daffodils, should go in the ground around mid-October.
- After all the wear and tear your deck or patio has seen over the summer months, the long days of August and early September are a perfect time to do any maintenance and cleaning.
- Winter vegetable time. Start prepping the ground now for a crop of hearty fall and winter vegetables. Don’t forget to work in that compost and give them a good layer of mulch. Garlic, onions and the first crop of apples should be ready any time as well.
- House plants and container plants could use a little extra TLC right now. Give them a good shower and a little compost “tea”, or a small amount of compost worked into the soil to help them stay healthy.
- How’s your outdoor furniture? If you’ve got wood outdoor furniture, give it a good cleaning and sealant before the weather changes too much, that will keep you using your deck well into late fall.
- A bug’s life. How are your garden’s bugs doing? Take a good look around and take steps to remove the bad bugs and encourage the good bugs.