Northern & Central Midwest

September, 2006
Regional Report

Bring Houseplants Indoors

It's time to start gradually bringing houseplants back indoors. Check them carefully for insects and disease problems before bringing them in. A spray of horticultural oil should take care of any insects. Repot any that are outgrowing their pots.

Aerate Your Lawn

Fall is a great time to core aerate your lawn. You can hire a professional lawn service to do it or rent the equipment and do it yourself. Core-aeration helps loosen compacted soil, takes care of heavy thatch, and helps areas with poor drainage. Do this when the soil is somewhat dry, not wet.

Make the Best Use of Tomatoes and Peppers

Tomatoes, peppers, eggplants, and cucumbers are coming into major production right now, so pick them as soon as they ripen to avoid rotting problems. If an early frost threatens, cover plants with baskets or light blankets, or pick all the fruits and bring them indoors.

Repair Lawn in the Cool Fall Weather

Fall is the time to assess and repair your lawn if necessary. If areas have been simply dormant, a little water will bring them back around. You can overseed thin areas as long as they are not completely dead. Add a light mulch and keep seed moist.

Tolerate Asian Lady Beetles

Asian lady beetles are starting to appear inside. They differ from native lady beetles by seeking hibernation sites indoors instead of outdoors. They are only a nuisance; vacuum them up, no pesticides are necessary.

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