Dig In: Garden Checklist for week of Nov. 4

Use this warm fall weather to clean up your garden. (Photo: Kathy Morrison)

Time for clean-up; help your garden make that seasonal transition

By Debbie Arrington

Does your garden look like fall -- or is it still hanging onto summer?

Warm weather keeps that summer feeling hanging on, along with some tomato vines and squash. But those old vines can become hiding places for a wide assortment of insects, looking for somewhere to overwinter. 
If you haven't already, it's time to clean up those summer remainders. Pull faded annuals and vegetables. Prune dead or broken branches from trees.

Rake and compost leaves, but dispose of any diseased plant material. For example, if peach and nectarine trees showed signs of leaf curl this year, clean up under trees and dispose of those leaves instead of composting.

Other tasks to tackle in early November:
* Give your azaleas, gardenias and camellias a boost with chelated iron.
* For larger blooms, pinch off some camellia buds.
* After they bloom, chrysanthemums should be trimmed to 6 to 8 inches above the ground. If in pots, keep the mums in their containers until next spring. Then, they can be planted in the ground, if desired, or repotted.
* Prune non-flowering trees and shrubs while dormant.
* Keep planting bulbs to spread out your spring bloom. Some possible suggestions: Daffodils, crocuses, hyacinths, tulips, anemones and scillas.
* This is also a good time to seed wildflowers and plant such spring bloomers as sweet pea, sweet alyssum and bachelor buttons.
* Set out cool-weather annuals such as pansies and snapdragons.
* Lettuce, cabbage and broccoli also can be planted now. Plant garlic and onions.


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