Ag picture

Lawns

- Late fall fertilization with a 50% slow release nitrogen fertilizer
- Final mowing lower than the summer, about 2 inches, to reduce potential fungal problems in late winter/early spring
- Remove leaves to avoid smothering the grass
- Lawns can be topdressed with compost - not more than 1/8 of an inch
- Winterize irrigation systems

Landscape Plants

- Fall planting should be completed as soon as possible
- Make sure there is adequate soil moisture before ground freezes
- Beds can be mulched once ground begins to freeze
- Protect tender plants and evergreens most susceptible to cold, drying winds using barriers or protective sprays
- Dormant oils for overwintering mites and insect pests can be applied but should be applied when temperatures are above 40 degrees
- Contact your local extension office for a Pick-Your-Own Christmas Tree brochure

Herbaceous Perennials, Biennials and Annuals

- There is still time to dig up tender bulbs, rhizomes and tuberous roots such as Dahlias, Cannas, and tuberous Begonias
- Trim back dead stems of herbaceous perennials
- Do not trim the inflorescences (flower stalks) of ornamental grasses since they provide winter interest
- Frost has probably killed many of the annuals and can be removed and placed in the compost pile
- Certain annuals can be tender perennials like dusty miller and survive mild winters
- Mulch beds (3-4 inches) after ground begins to freeze to prevent thawing and heaving of perennials and biennials

Vegetable Garden

- Harvest cool season crops like cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, spinach, kale and turnips - these can also be found at your local farm market
- Finish the garden clean-up and plant a cover crop
- Mulch (straw, salt hay, leaves, etc.) overwintering vegetables and herbs like beets, parsnips, rosemary, lavender, and thyme.

Houseplants

- Monitor plants for insect problems if they were outside this summer
- Avoid excessive fertilization of plants - it is a time of rest for many plants
- Provide light and moisture according to the needs of each plant. For example, holiday cactus prefer cool, bright area with minimal water requirements
- Minimize the plant-s exposure to temperature extremes - cold and heat

If Plants Could Talk features gardening tips from local university experts, successful farmers, master gardeners, and many other plant experts. Topics include new and interesting plant varieties, safe and effective pest control, step-by-step cultural tips for landscape and garden, and visits to local farms, arboretums, and backyard gardens.

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This Month's Feature
Plant Talk
Plant Talk
Bill Hlubik's weekly article for 5/22/2008
List of Trees for Fall Interest
List of Trees for Fall Interest
List of trees that will add beauty and color to your fall landscape.
List of NJ Pick Your Own Farms
List of NJ "Pick Your Own"
Find a "pick your own" farm for some Jersey Fresh pumpkins and apples!
Growing Apples
Growing Apples
Watch Bill Tietjen as he demonstrates what to look for to produce healthy apples.
The Delaware and Raritan Canal State Park
The Delaware and Raritan Canal State Park
Enjoy the wildlife and fall foliage at the Delaware and Raritan Canal State Park