How Does Your Garden Grow? – November 2014

Louise Grabell

It’s November already! How did that happen? Well, while you are thinking that the gardening season is over, let me tell you what you could and should be doing at this time of the year. Get your shovels ready!

There is one important gardening don’t that you must remember: now is not the time for pruning. If you do, the tender new shoots you encourage will be damaged by the frosts and freezes of the winter. So wait until everything is dormant in January to prune back lantanas, etc. Now on to what you can do now. Perennials can be dug, split and replanted. Irises, daylilies and echinacea, etc. fall into this category but there are many other perennials as well. Spring bulbs should be planted now and if you plant them deep enough, they will produce beautifully for many years. Daffodils in particular are persistent performers. Gladiolas should be dug and the corms separated (they produce more corms and cormlets every year) and replanted…always in the rear of your garden because they grow very tall.

I assume that you have already removed your dead or dying annuals by now. If you don’t, those ugly seed heads will drop to the soil and sprout all over the place next spring! I know this from experience. Every spring I get zinnias growing all over my gravel—and I don’t have the heart to pull them out so things look a bit unkempt—but nonetheless colorful. Remove those weeds as well. If you’ve had a grub problem this year, apply that magical nematode mixture from ARBICO to get rid of those garden pests.

Once you’ve finished your fall chores, stay off your garden soil areas until spring. This will prevent disturbing and packing the soil and basically causing you to have to plow it when planting time arrives. Soil amendments can be applied in early spring, along with fertilizers. Trees and shrubs do not need fertilizing now either. You will have some relaxation time for a few months, so go to the gym to keep in shape!

The Master Gardeners of SaddleBrooke have a website: for all up to date information and events for our community. Garden questions? You can reach our SaddleBrooke Garden Helpline by calling Pat at 52o-407-6459. Your phone call will be forwarded to a Master Gardener Volunteer who will assist you in the solution of your problem.

Remember, nothing brings more tranquility to the heart than a beautiful garden.