Winter is around the corner and your garden needs some pampering to help it through the cold and stormy months ahead and get it in good shape for next spring. A November gardening calendar really highlights the differences in regional gardens. For many there is no November garden to speak of. But even if your garden is already covered in snow, there are still garden tasks calling. Unfortunately insect pests are much hardier than their tiny size would suggest.
Here are a few gardening tasks and projects that you can do this month to help keep your garden looking it’s best for the rest of this season, and prepare for the long cold winter and upcoming spring.
– Rake leaves and make leaf mold or compost
– Clean, sharpen, and oil garden tools.
– Start forcing bulbs like paperwhites, hyacinth and amaryllis for the holidays
– Add organic matter to beds
– Cover compost so that rain doesn’t flood and leach the nutrients
– Keep weeding
Frost Free Areas
– Perennials can be divided now
– Plant Roses, Azaleas, Camellias & Tropical Fruit Trees suited to your areas, as they become available
– Prune flowering trees as they drop their blossoms
– Keep planting bulbs that don’t require a cold period (amaryllis, anemone, calla lily, freesia, homeria, lilies, oxalis, Ranunculus, Sparaxis, watsonia) and garlic
– Plant cool season vegetables and perennial herbs
– Replace summer’s annuals with cool season bloomers
– Sow wildflower seeds
– Keep an eye out for insect pests
Frosty Zones (Zones 6 and down):
– Keep watering trees and shrubs until the ground freezes
– Protect your roses by mounding soil around the crown and covering the bud union. Tie down climbing rose canes to protect them from cold winds.
– Clean up garden debris and cut back and remove any diseased or infested foliage.
– Protect evergreens from deer damage by circling with stakes and burlap.
– Protect young trees from mice damage by wrapping wire around the bottom portion of the trunk
– Protect plants from vole damage by not mounding mulch too close to the plant
– Get those bulbs into the ground NOW
– Drain and store hoses
– If you’re planning on buying a live Christmas tree with the intention of planting it this winter, dig the hole now, before the ground freezes. Remember to keep the soil covered, so that it too does not freeze and can go back into the hole.
Borderline Zones (Pacific NW, Southwest & Southeast)
– Plant cool season vegetables
– Plant asparagus and cut back tops of existing asparagus plants after they are yellowed by frost
– There’s still time to plant a cover crop in the vegetable garden
– Watch for frost warnings. Extend the harvest by protecting plants with row covers
– Sow wildflower seeds
– Beef up snail patrol
– Ward of cankerworms on trees by applying sticky barriers, like Tanglefoot, once leaves have dropped (Southeast)
– Check that indoor plants are receiving enough water, humidity and air circulation.
– Keep an eye out for pests like spider mites and scale, and take care of them before they become a problem.