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"Even if it is a garden you know by heart
there are twelve months in the year
and every month means a different garden,
and the discovery of things unexpected
all the rest of the year."
~ Margery Fish from We Made a Garden, 1956

jan | feb | mar | apr | may | jun | jul | aug | sep | oct | nov | dec

• Fertilize evergreen lawns; do not fertilize summer grasses such as Bermuda, Centepede, and Zoysia.

• Treat lawns with a per-emergent herbicide to prevent winter weeds and weed grasses.

• Early in the month place Christmas Cactus in dim light and let the soil dry. Water sparingly and keep on the dry side until mid-November so new buds will form and bloom for the holidays.

• To force Amaryllis to flower for the holidays, bring potted plants inside to force into dormancy. Cut off the leaves approximately 2" above the bulb. Place in a dark place at room temperature or slightly cooler and do NOT water the plant during its dormancy. After about five weeks or longer, about four to six weeks before you want it to flower, return the bulb to a sunny area or place it under plant-growing lights. Replace the top inch or so of soil and a bit of bone meal. Water the plant, and get ready for a new cycle of bloom.

• Cut off spent flower heads from garden Phlox.

• Weed flower beds and borders to prevent the spread of weed seeds.

• Purchase spring-flowering bulbs while selections are good. Store Lilies and Tulips in the refrigerator until late November.

• Plant spring-blooming bulbs such as Chionodoxa, Crocus, Daffodil, and Scilla. Caution: Do not plant Lilies or Tulips this month.

• Plant Perennials such as Daylilies, Echinacea, Hostas, Shasta Daisies, Siberian and Bearded Iris, Peonies, and Phlox.

• Divide spring-blooming perennials.

• Transplant seedlings of Biennials such as English Daisies, Foxglove, Forget-me-nots, and Pansies into their permanent locations.

• If you didn't plant seeds earlier and have transplants ready, purchase and plant English Daisies and Pansies for winter color.

• Bring Tropical plants that have been outside for the summer indoors before they are damaged by the cold. Check them first and treat for insects before bringing them in.

• Repot plants that have outgrown their containers before bringing indoors using a light, well-draining potting mix.

• Disbud Dahlia for larger flowers.

• Buy potting soil for "WinterSowing" while it is still available.

• Make cuttings of garden plants such as Begonias, Coleus, Geraniums, and Impatiens you want to overwinter indoors.

• Propagate evergreen shrubs. Dip cuttings in a hormone powder, place in sandy soil, and water well. Cuttings should be rooted by spring.

• Clean up and remove dead plants or plant parts to eliminate over-wintering shelter for insects and diseases.

• Keep cutting the lawn, but raise the blade a bit since summer grasses need a protective covering of foliage during the winter.

• Look for all kinds of interesting seed pods and fruit for use in fall decorations.

• Pick green tomatoes before first frost.

• Label Chrysanthemums and Dahlias for next year's propagation.

• Remove mulch from Hostas. Voles love Hosta roots!

• For colorful indoor blooms, start potting up pots of bulbs to be forced indoors.

• Leaves packed against the trunks and stems of trees and shrubs can cause damage and also provide protection for voles, so keep them raked.

• Make a compost pile. Two is better since leaves make take two years to decompose.

• Add leaves to the compost pile.

• Late in the month is a good time to buy deciduous trees and shrubs and broadleaf evergreen foundation plants.

Monthly To Do Lists

jan | feb | mar | apr | may | jun | jul | aug | sep | oct | nov | dec

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