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October

Flowers & Ornamental Grasses

Flowers & Ornamental Grasses

Fruits, Vegetables & Herbs

Fruits, Vegetables & Herbs

Groundcovers & Vines

Groundcovers & Vines

Indoor & Holiday Plants

Indoor & Holiday Plants

Lawns

Lawns

  • Continue to mow your lawn high and for as long as it continues to grow in fall.
  • Fertilize WARM season lawns with a low nitrogen slow release fertilizer like Milorganite in early October or when overseeding with ryegrass.
  • Fertilize COOL season grasses between mid-October and Thanksgiving (before the ground freezes) with a low nitrogen slow release fertilizer like Milorganite.
  • Northern gardeners can plant cool season grass seed in bare areas of the lawn damaged by summer heat or pests.
  • Southern gardeners can overseed the lawn with ryegrass for a greener winter lawn.
  • Monitor northern lawns for dollar spot and rust diseases.
  • Shred fall leaves as you mow the lawn.  Leave them on the lawn as they add organic matter and nutrients to the soil.
  • Add shredded leaves and other pest-free plant debris to your compost pile. These will eventually turn into nutrient-rich compost.
  • Fall is a great time to test the soil when establishing a new lawn or managing one that is not performing well.

Trees, Shrubs & Roses

Trees, Shrubs & Roses

October is a great time to plant most trees and shrubs. The soil is warm and air is cool, reducing the risk of transplant shock.

Water new plantings, moisture-loving plants and evergreens thoroughly and as needed until the ground freezes.

Fall, after the leaves drop, is the second best time to transplant shrubs and small trees.

Fertilize trees and shrubs in need of a nutrient boost in fall after the leaves drop.

Yellow and brown needles all along the trunk of evergreen trees and shrubs is a normal occurrence called season needle drop.

Cold weather gardeners should stop deadheading roses so they will harden off for winter. They will form rose hips for you and the birds to enjoy.

Allow shrub roses to stand for winter to increase hardiness. Northern gardeners should wait to protect tender roses until after a week of consistently freezing temperatures.

Avoid pruning evergreens in fall. Exposing the tender inner growth increases the risk of winter damage.

Start installing animal protection now. Fencing, scare tactics and repellents or a combination of these can help protect your plants from hungry critters this winter.

Fall is a great time to remove invasive plants like buckthorn and honeysuckle shrubs from the landscape.

Shred fall leaves and use them as mulch over the soil in perennial flowerbeds.

Use shredded leaves to increase the organic matter and nutrients in annual flower and vegetable gardens.

Add shredded leaves and other pest-free plant debris to your compost pile. These will eventually turn into nutrient-rich compost.

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February 7-9, 2020
PBS Wisconsin's
Garden & Landscape Expo 

Madison, WI
 

February 14 & 15 , 2020
Milwaukee NARI Spring Home Improvement Show
West Allis, WI


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