Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Things to do in the September garden

'Whatever you can do, or dream you can do,
begin it,
boldness has genius, power & magic in it.'
- Johann Wolfgang van Goethe

  • Plant spring flower bulbs, starting with daffodils, crocus, Siberian squills, glory-of-the-snow (Chionodoxa), dwarf irises, hyacinths, Anemone blanda and species tulips.
  • Continue deadheading flowers, and weeding. Unless the rains come early the garden will need long, slow waterings to supply plants with adequate moisture at their deepest roots.
  • As the weather cools, dig & divide congested or overgrown perennials, or reposition perennial plants while their appearance and dimensions are clear. Plant new perennials this month.
  • September is an ideal lawn seeding month. The ground remains warm for rapid germination of the grass seed, while cooling weather allows for easier maintenance of an evenly moist soil surface.
  • Bring house plants that have summered outdoors back into the house. Clean them well first, and make sure they are free of pests. Do not add manure of any sort to house plants as a source of fertilizer as you will have a fruit fly infestation!
  • Earth up leeks and celery.
  • Pot up spring flower bulbs in the greenhouse for indoor bloom during the winter. Store the pots in a dark place, ideally at temperatures around 9 C.
  • Plant pansies, wallflowers, primulas, flowering kale and cabbage, Brompton stocks and forget-me-not into garden beds and containers.
  • Keep hanging basket and planter flowers groomed by clipping off dead flowers and plant parts.
  • Lift onion bulbs once the tops have withered. Dry the bulbs well in a warm, dry, sunny location for about 10 days, and store in a cool, dark, dry place.
  • Lift and compost annual flower and vegetable plants that have finished producing.
  • Start saving seeds from healthy, productive plants such as calendula, nasturtiums, wild flowers (foxglove, daisies, lupins, poppies & others), & veggies. Dry well & store in cool, dry conditions. Make sure to label the packages! 
  • Save leaves & other garden debris for winter mulch - when deadheading & trimming, cut the waste into smaller pieces & apply right back on the beds (as long as there is no diseased leaves)
  • Clean up & tidy the greenhouse for sowing of winter greens. Mulch the indoor beds well, scrub out pots & store, clean the inside glass or plastic with a mild detergent.
September (& October) are my favourite months of the year & usually very busy times for me in the gardens. It's the end of the busy summer season & I have a chance to finish up on spring projects before the winter rains begin, pick blackberries & salal berries for jam/jelly making & see where the garden has taken me over the last few months. Because I live on the coast where the growing season is pretty much 11 months of the year, I have to prune back the invasive plants again.  There is enough time for me to divide & transplant & take cuttings of perennials & shrubs to fill in the holes, sow seeds from wild flowers (foxglove need the winter to sprout), move soil & rocks around & finally to just sit & relax in the sunshine with my arsenal of seed & bulb catalogues & garden magazines for planning of next year's gardens.


    Sheryl at Providence Acres Farm said...

    I would absolutely love a year round growing season!!

    Gaby said...

    Do you know what's funny? My feet look just like yours when I'm done playing in the garden