Many gardeners are big fans of fall. The brisk, cooler weather is the ideal setting for spending time with nature and enjoying the great outdoors. Not too hot, not too cold, and full of festive seasonal pleasures like pumpkin and apple picking. It’d be a shame not to experience autumn in its full beauty, so make sure you’ve got your autumn gardening to-do list handy.
To ensure your plants and yard stay happy and healthy, it’s essential you take into account the necessary upkeep that comes with the new season. Certain things need to be done to your garden—whether you have a container or vegetable or plot garden—and we’re about to help you make sure they’re all on your radar. The autumn air sets a fantastic atmosphere for giving your garden some TLC so it can last through winter and eventually spring. So put on those gardening gloves, get your stool out, and let’s get started.
To-Do List for Fall Garden Maintenance
Early Fall Garden Tasks
Plant any spring bulbs (except tulips), shrubs, trees, fruit bushes, and other spring-blooming flowers (pansies, wallflowers, bellis daisies) for early spring colour to accent fall flowers
Plant onions and garlic
Plant hardy varieties such as Igloo Mums
Wrap mildly tender exotic varieties in fleece to protect them from frost
Cover mildly tender perennials with a thick mulch of bark chips or straw
Remove tender varieties by cutting back the stems and gently lifting the tubers/rhizomes from the ground. Clean the soil from them and store them in trays of dry compost or sand. You’ll want just the top of crown to be visible. Keep the trays in a cool, frost-free place until spring when you can replant.
Bring your houseplants back indoors, first checking for pests and diseases
Apply an autumn lawn fertilizer to established lawns
Mid-Fall Garden Tasks
Prune your hedges for the final time
Cut back faded perennials about 5 cm (2 inches) above ground level
Move poorly placed plants
Clean your greenhouse or garden shed to help reduce overwintering pests and diseases
Dig up annuals and add them to your compost heap
Trim late-flowering shrubs to reduce wind damage in the winter
Prepare for your winter wonderland by making space
Rake up fallen leaves and compost to keep things clean
Already started your autumn gardening maintenance? Then you should join Rozanne’s Inner Circle. It’s for people like you who are always on top of their gardening and want to continue learning.