What to do Now!

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Noticing yellow needles on eastern white pines? It happens every year around this time! No need for alarm, it’s Mother Nature’s way of shedding older growth the plant doesn’t need and cannot support. In landscaped areas, use these needles as mulch. This natural phenomenon is not limited to pines; you will see it on rhododendrons, azaleas and other evergreens at this time of the year.

Use hardy mums in your planters. After they finish blooming, add them to your garden. They will repay you with blooms every fall.

Ornamental cabbage and kale are long lasting plants in the fall and early winter garden! It’s all about the leaves; fabulous leaf shapes and colors add interest and texture to pots, planters, beds and borders.

Frost can happen at any time; keep an eye on nighttime temperatures! A few things worth doing before frost:

• harvest any remaining green tomatoes to ripen indoors.

• harvest any remaining basil and freeze for use later this winter.

Remember to mow newly-seeded lawns regularly (generally weekly). Keep the blades sharp so you cut, not tear, the blades. Set the blade height to 3”. Remember – as long as grass (new and established lawns) continues to grow, you have to mow!

Time is running out for fertilizing lawns! Nassau County residents have until November 15th to fertilize; Suffolk County residents have until November 1st.

It’s time to think about closing the fountain for winter.

Ready bird feeders; it will soon be time to feed our feathered friends.

To lime or not to lime! Before you tackle the home lawn, have a soil pH test done now so you know if you need to add lime or not.

Need to mulch landscape beds? Remember, only 2-3 inches of mulch is needed. Helpful hints: do not apply mulch around or over the crowns of plants, and never volcano mulch!

What’s going on in the late October garden?