So like all of these gardening articles I need to start that you need to understand your zone. Your August in Zone 8 is what your November is like in zone 4, so you need to understand that I am casting a wide net here and you can adjust from the center to fit your needs. But here are the top 6 things I am doing now in my garden that I want to share with you.
1. Picking Herbs for Drying
Herbs are now hardying up as they grow. Herbs like basil and rosemary have stems that are starting to turn woody as their gain size. They will continue to flourish up through that first freeze, but this is the right time to control them cutting them back by 1/3 and drying the excess herbs you don’t need. I would repeat this each month from now forward. Just plan to cut them back by 1/3.
So you have probably heard me say in the past that you need to mutch your garden for three really big reasons. First, you need to keep moisture and heat in. The mulch acts as a barrier for the evaporation of water and the water is what retains the day’s heat. This will help your plants not dry out and start to turn dormant. Secondly, you need to prevent weeds from growing and stealing nutrients from your plants. The mulch will create a much tougher time for small plants to break through and without sunlight, they just won’t make it. Lastly, mulch is an organic way of providing nutrients to the soil.
So if your mulch from first planting is turning into great soil just like we planned, add more mulch to protect the plants and feed the soil in the winter.
3. Compost or feed
because the mulch is breaking down, the organic source of nutrients is wearing out. I like to use a compost tea made of organics like decomposing plant matter, manure and dried blood. You can also lookup some compost teas online or use a more readily available Hollytone or Miricle Grow.
4. Take notes of your top performers
Each spring I start to plan my garden and what I need to plant and I always start with the same question, “Was it the mortgage lifter or the beefsteak tomatoes that did so well for us last year?” Taking some good notes will help you remember the “winners” and make sure that you can secure seeds for next year.
5. Take pictures
So for more than just the obvious “So I can post them to social media and make everyone jealous”, you probably want to remember what you planted where last year. A quick photo will help you remember which plants did well in certain types of light, soil, or next to which other plants. But yeah, do post it to Facebook and mention the group here on it as well so we can all enjoy.
6. Plant Fall Crops
If you are in a region where you still have a few months left to grow, it’s time to start your next batch of crop. Items like Lettuce, Peas, and Kale are at the top of my list for this season.