Lower South

October, 2012
Regional Report

Don't Weed Out Spring Flowers

Some of our spring bloomers begin their life in the fall when they sprout and form small plants that overwinter. Then in spring they take off, growing fast and putting on their bloom show. As you are removing weeds from the garden now, watch for seedlings of poppies, sweet peas, larkspur, bluebonnets, and other plants you want to keep that get their start in the fall.

Plant Root Crops

Carrots, beets, turnips, and other root vegetables can be planted now that the weather has cooled off somewhat. They will emerge quickly and grow fast in the mild weather to come and reward you with a bountiful harvest. Follow instructions on the packet for planting depth and spacing.

Store Seeds for Next Year

If you gather your own seeds or have some left in a packet from this year's plantings, store them properly to maintain their viability. Place them in an airtight container and put it in the refrigerator or freezer. If you have some desiccant packets, toss them in the container also to absorb any moisture that might be present.

Harvest Citrus at Peak Quality

Oranges are orange, right? Well most types are actually best if harvested when still partially green. If you are fortunate enough to have a container-grown lemon, Satsuma orange, or other citrus plant, learn how the fruit looks at its peak to avoid a loss of quality.

Fertilize Cool Season Plants

Cool season vegetables are growing rapidly now that the temperatures are starting to cool off a bit. Keep them growing rapidly by fertilizing with a soluble fertilizer solution weekly or a dry product mixed into the soil surface every four weeks. This will build a strong plant and result in a more productive harvest.

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