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Farmers Almanac
The 2014 Farmers Almanac
Farmers' Almanac

Fall Garden Cleanup Checklist

Fall Garden Cleanup Checklist

1. Add leaves and grass clippings to your compost pile.
2. Dig and harvest all vegetables before frost. Place green tomatoes on shelves in a cool area so they can ripen slowly. Parsnips, turnips, and carrots may be left in the ground. Some gardeners say this improves their flavor.
3. Mulch strawberry beds, roses, tender perennials, and plants with peat moss or straw to help prevent winter damage.
4. Do an over seeding where lawns are sparse. Fall is nature’s seeding time so a little help now will help eliminate bare or thin spots later.
5. Apply wilt-proof sprays to tender, broad-leaved evergreens to help reduce the drying effects of winter winds, especially on newly-planted shrubs.
6. Stake any newly-planted trees to help them get through their first winter.
7. If bagworms or late insects attack, physically remove and destroy them. Check trees and shrubs for scales and other pests. If you find any, plan an early dormant oil spray before flowers or leaves appear on fruit trees.
8. Pull up annuals and prune perennials as a good cleanup practice.
9. Begin fertilizing plan for houseplants. As home heat goes on, it stimulates plant growth which means you will need to pay more attention to fertilizing and watering.
10. Do final mowing raking and make notes of lawn care projects for the spring.
11. If you have wet spring weather, plan to dig or till your vegetables garden in the fall so you can get an early start next spring.
12. Remove old fruiting canes of berry bushes. Prune grape and blueberries.

If you notice a hole in the upper left-hand corner of your Farmers' Almanac, don't return it to the store! That hole isn't a defect; it's a part of history. Starting with the first edition of the Farmers' Almanac in 1818, readers used to nail holes into the corners to hang it up in their homes, barns, and outhouses (to provide both reading material and toilet paper). In 1910, the Almanac's publishers began pre-drilling holes in the corners to make it even easier for readers to keep all of that invaluable information (and paper) handy.