As summer fades, we welcome the changes autumn brings in our stores and in our gardens. Brilliant fall colors are beginning to fill our benches, putting on a tremendous show. September is nothing short of exciting when it comes to gardening—fall is the best time for planting! And don’t forget about harvesting those tasty summer veggies to make room for fall and winter crops.

For Fresh Color

Add fall color to the garden: asters, mums, rudbeckia, pansies, ornamental cabbage and kale, colorful peppers

It’s almost time to plant spring flowering bulbs!

  • Daffodils, tulips, and crocus will bring you early spring color.
  • Bulbs are arriving at our stores and can be planted as late as Thanksgiving, but October is best. Use G&B Soil Building Conditioner and bone meal or bulb food at planting time.
  • Bulbs also make great additions to fall and winter container plantings with pansies or violas planted over the top.

 

For the Lawn & Landscape

Start a new lawn or overseed patchy lawns now through mid-October. It’s also prime time to aerate and repair existing lawns.

  • Seed a new lawn with 7–10 pounds of seed per 1000 square feet; use half this amount if overseeding.
  • Use Grass seed, lime, G&B Organic Lawn Fertilizer, and G&B Soil Building Conditioner

Divide and conquer: Dig up and split large patches of iris, peonies, daylilies, and other spring blooming perennials.

  • Use a sharp spade or cultivation fork to dig.
  • Use a pruning saw or Hori Hori knife to divide the clump.
  • Replant with Malibu Compost and G&B Starter Fertilizer.

As weather cools and regular rains return, plant or transplant trees, shrubs, and perennials for a jump-start on spring.

  • Use G&B Starter Fertilizer when planting/transplanting.
  • Water in with Bonide Root & Grow or Malibu Bu’s Brew Compost Tea to help quickly establish a healthy root system and boost microbe levels in the soil.

 

For the Edible Garden

It’s harvest time!

  • Pick winter squash when the spot touching the ground changes from white to cream/gold color.
  • Dig potatoes, onions, and garlic when the tops die down; store in a cool, dark location.
  • Apply mulch to carrots, parsnips, and beets for winter harvesting; use G&B Soil Building Conditioner.

Continue to plant cover crops in the vegetable garden as space opens up. Cover crops are beneficial because they:

  • Compete with weeds
  • Improve the soil while growing
  • Add nutrition when turned under in early spring

Edibles to plant this month: garlic (bulbs), radishes, spinach, kale, chard, lettuce, mustard greens

In the Garden Shed

Pro-active pest control can greatly improve your garden’s productivity:

  • Control slugs now to reduce your garden’s breeding population. Use bait traps or non-toxic Sluggo, Sluggo Plus, or Bonide Slug Magic.
  • Apply beneficial nematodes to rhododendrons and azaleas suffering from root weevil damage; if unsure, bring a leaf sample to the garden center for diagnosis.

 

For the Indoors

Houseplant care:

  • Clean the foliage, check for insects, spray, repot, and fertilize, if necessary.
  • Bring houseplants indoors if they have been outside.
  • This is the last “active” growing month for indoor plants before they begin to go dormant for winter and the last chance for repotting this year.

If you have kept an amaryllis from last year:

  • Stop watering it now and allow it to go dormant for 4–6 weeks in a basement, shed, or garage.
  • Then, repot it and bring it back into a warm, bright room to re-bloom this winter.

 

Just for Fun

Take cuttings from maturing outdoor herbs (or coleus) to grow indoors during winter.

  • Try cutting several 2 to 4-inch long stems from rosemary, basil, thyme, and sage—place in water for a few weeks indoors while new roots grow.
  • Once small root mass has formed, gently transplant into container with G&B Potting Soil.
  • Supplement with artificial grow lights if plants begin to yellow or do poorly.

 

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