Your October to-do list for the garden

With autumn well on its way, it’s time to swap your summer gardening methods┬áto fall techniques. During October, there are plenty of jobs to be done in the garden. As most parts of the country are going to be experiencing chillier weather and longer nights, you’ll need to prepare for what’s ahead. If you’re preparing your to-do list for the season, here are a few things that must be on the docket:

Lawn care
If your yard needs new turf, October is the best mouth for laying it. First, you need to make sure the soil is prepared properly. You’ll need to make sure the soil isn’t too compacted with grass clippings, leaves and moss, as this can prevent nutrients from getting to the roots of the grass. After mowing, use a spring-tined wire rack to get rid of all the dead organic matter from the surface of the lawn. While at first this might look a bit unruly, it will leave you with a well-primed lawn for the upcoming season.

Your garden
In your organic vegetable garden, you’ll want to either harvest or heavily mulch crops like carrots, beets and other roots to keep them warm enough to not freeze. If you have pumpkin or squash in your garden, make sure to harvest this and let them ripen in the sun for about 10 days. This is a great time for garlic and shallots to be planted as well.

Now is the time to tend to your compost as well. Turn the compost and make sure it is covered for the winter, so it is protected until the spring.

You will also want to dig up any old vines and vegetable plants. Then turn over the soil and return the matter back to the soil. By the time spring arrives, the organic matter will have given lots of nutrients to the soil. At the same rate, it destroys insects and their eggs.

Weeds
If there are weeds in the yard or garden, now is the perfect time to get rid of them. Perennial weeds, like dandelions, are best killed during fall sprays instead of summer. Weeds that are spread by seed are especially important to get rid of because they produce thousands of seeds.