Wednesday, October 7, 2009

October Groundwork

October finally brings the subtle change in weather we have been waiting for. For gardeners in the low desert this is our "second spring". Our warm days accelerate the sprouting of our newly sown seeds, and the cool night air gives seeds and gardener a pleasant break. This is the prime season to plant a long list of cool-weather vegetables, flowers and herbs. We have seven whole months of mostly mild weather. This gives root systems plenty of time to become established before our summer heat returns.

October to-do list
  • Continue to sow cool weather vegetables every 2 to 4 weeks for a continuous supply of vegetables through next spring.

  • Sow cool-season herbs and edible flowers. The list includes: chives, cilantro, dill, fennel, parsley, anise, chamomile and lemon balm. Flowers include: nasturtium, pansies, calendula, marigolds, johnny jump-ups, scented geranium, snapdragon, stock and hollyhock.

  • Prepare bulb garden beds, sow seeds of sweet peas, and broadcast wild flower seeds.

  • Plant now or design and plan your backyard garden for a future location that might include: asparagus, raspberry, blackberry, grape and strawberries. Trellised vines can be trained over a fence, arbor or wall to create "green rooms" in your garden.

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