To Do List For September Gardens - TribPapers

To Do List For September Gardens

Photo by Yoksel Zok

Asheville – As summer draws to a close we should start our seasonal selects in anticipation of Autum.

Choosing Fall Vegetables for Planting

Now is the time to consider cool-season annual vegetables (cold-hardy when temperatures are below 70°F) such as beets, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, collards, kale, kohlrabi, lettuce, mustard, onions, peas, potatoes, radishes, rutabagas, spinach, Swiss chard and turnips. Plant starts of broccoli, cabbage, brussel sprouts are best planted now and are available in local garden centers. Other vegetables such as carrots, lettuce and peas are easily started from seed.

For Harvesting Vegetables This Fall

Late blight on tomatoes and mildews on squash and cucumbers have arrived.

Continue fungicide treatments to prevent disease development. If blight appears, remove plants immediately to protect the remaining plants. Avoid working in the garden when the plants are wet. It’s easy to spread diseases during this time.


* Wait to seed and fertilize cool-season fescue or bluegrass lawns until the very end of August and even the weather is warm. Cool-season grasses won’t respond when the weather is hot and dry.

* Now is a good time to examine turf for the presence of white grubs. With a heavy-duty knife or spade, cut a 1 square-foot flap of sod and roll it back. Examine the soil and roots in the top 3 to 4 inches. Repeat this process in several locations. If you find an average of five or more grubs per square foot, treatment may be justified.


* Stay on top of weeds and remove them before they go to seed.

* Reinforce supports on tall varieties of Dahlias and remove lateral flower buds to increase size of the one remaining flower.

* Monitor trees or shrubs planted last year and provide a deep watering once a week when rainfall is insufficient.

* Deadhead garden perennials by removing faded flowers and dying stems to improve the appearance and possibly encourage a second bloom.

* Container gardens may need some late summer TLC and could benefit from grooming and a dose of liquid fertilizer.

* Now is NOT the time to fertilize shrubs and trees as they slow down growth and

move towards fall leaf drop and winter dormancy. One exception is fall or reblooming roses where a quick release fertilizer can provide a late season boost.

* Also HOLD OFF on major pruning of shrubs and trees until after frost or late winter. Pruning now stimulates tender new growth that can be killed by the first hard frost.

* Continue fungicide treatments on tree fruits. Follow label directions for pre-harvest


* Watch for peach tree borers on peach, cherry and plum trees.

* After harvest, remove all the old fruiting canes on Blackberries. Leave the new shoots that started in the spring. Thin to four to six shoots per crown, training the best shoots to the trellis.

Consult with your local extension office for questions regarding planting zones, gardening tips, and Master Gardener classes. Reach the Garden Helpline at 828-255-5522. Email questions or subscribe at

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