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It’s harvest time! After canning, pickling, blending, preserving, and drying, there couldn’t possibly be more garden work to do for the season, right? While we’re closing in on the fall, there is still a handful of work to be done to prepare your plants for winter. Some of your plants are still productive, from pumpkins and squash ripening, to asters that have just started blooming. Refreshing your garden beds is important for managing crop residue, and giving fall a spectacular finish. For late season gardeners, there is even more planting you can do for late season veggies!
Once your plants have stopped producing for the season, you’re often left with an overwhelming tangle of vines and dried out greenery. Start by cutting back any growth that is dead or no longer productive to redirect nutrients and energy towards any remaining fruit. Plants that are still producing might need an extra boost of nutrients to finish off the season, and a layer of protection as evenings become cooler. Add a handful of Activated Compost near the base of your plant, or sprinkle with a combination of BioActive Supercharger and Purple Cow CX-1 to provide a dose of nutrients and biology that will carry your plants through a successful harvest.
Though some gardeners use fall as a season for rest and relaxation, the fall brings an amazing opportunity to plant late-season produce and get a final harvest before winter. Leafy greens, such as lettuce, kale, spinach, and chard, are easy and quick to grow in the later season and become sweeter after they’re hit with a light frost. You can also plant carrots, beets, and radishes for a final harvest of extra-delicious root vegetables. Though these plants can survive a light harvest, frost can be damaging for more tender greens. Adding a layer of compost over winter vegetables can help to protect plants from any early frost, and provide insulation from the cold, increase water retention, and deliver essential nutrients to feed your final harvest.
Even if you’re not planting for a late fall harvest, now is the perfect time to get a jump start on spring by overwintering plants. Overwintering plants gives you the ability you to do some early maintenance for the following spring. Onions, brussels sprouts, and carrots are just a few varieties you can plant in the late fall for an early spring harvest. Plant these crops with a sprinkling of Tomato Gro or Activated Compost to support root development over the colder months. Garlic is another popular crop to plant in the fall for an early Spring harvest, that’s easy to grow with organic amendments with Purple Cow! We recommend soaking your seed garlic in a diluted mixture of our CX-1 and BioActive Supercharger for between 6 hours to 4 days. This helps to jumpstart growth on your garlic cloves before they’re planted. We recommend adding a layer of Activated Compost over your overwintering vegetables to help protect them from extreme cold, and to give a ready supply of nutrients in the Spring.
Though we’re still in the early stages of fall, there are some easy ways you can get started on your fall garden maintenance, and save yourself from extra late-season. Winter vegetables can keep the gardening fun going by extending your growing season, and preparing your garden for spring.
Looking for other ways to get a head start on winter preparations? Contact us for more information on how to care for your fall plants!