Another Farming Season Comes to a Close...
Well… the 2023 farm season has come to an end… the blooming part that is! November 3rd was our killing frost, a week earlier than last year but pretty consistent in general for the first two weeks of November for us in Zone 6.
The great dahlia dig and divide has started and we have only just begun with tulip planting! The fall is always a bittersweet time of the year and the least fun. It’s a lot of digging, composting, and amending the soil without any visible results for MONTHS! And it’s freaking cold :(
If you’re putting your garden to bed this season like we are, here are a few things we do that makes it so easy easier for us each spring:
1- Leave the leaves! Leaves will break down and compost over time bringing beneficial nutrients to your soil. By leaving the leaves on your garden bed you’re basically making compost without an actual compost! Plus that even layer of cover helps the soil from getting too frost bitten and killing any top layer microorganisms.
2- Take your neighbour's leaf bags! If your neighbours have raked leaves and left them on the curb, take them and store them in your garage for the spring and use them as free, natural decomposing mulch!
3- Plant spring bulbs! It really doesn’t take long, even if you grab a small package from your local hardware store. Daffodils and narcissus bloom in late March and are the first signs of spring when everything outside still feels dark and cold. You’ll thank yourself for doing it!
4- Dig out any bug weeds. Some weeds will start growing in March, long before you want to get outside to garden, and will unfortunately be quite big in May when you get around to them. A quick weeding in the fall while planting bulbs takes 1/4 of the time that it will in the spring.
5- Protect your perennials. If you have perennials that you want to make sure survive our sometimes frigid winters, build a little hill with leaves or soil around their base to help insulate the plant over the winter. Don’t cut any branches though, it’s best to prune in the spring.
Your fall garden put to bed should actual look like a giant overflowing pile of mess, debris and long spindly branches. This will give you the best garden when next spring rolls around. And don’t worry, the snow will be here soon enough and will cover the mess. *crying emoji*
Now head outside and get those chores done! Then come by the shop to treat yourself to some chocolate and fresh blooms to congratulate yourself on a job well done ;)