Dig deeper: Extend the growing season with these spring gardening tips

According to Elizabeth Pessesi of Greenberg, speed is one of the things that distinguishes a garden from a spring garden.

“There is a lot to be planned for in the spring; But you can take your time in the fall and go a little slower, ”said Pessie, a gardener and treasurer at the Penn State Extension Master of the Greensberg Garden Center.

“You can really stop and smell the flowers,” she said as the growing season slows down and prepares your gardens for the winter. During the harvest season, we are often busy.

More speed does not mean that there is not much work to be done.

Fall is a good time to grow the last cold weather crop, to keep the flowers as long as possible, and finally to keep the winter.

It is not yet time to plant

“Now is the time to grow crops, such as spinach, cabbage, greens, and boc choy,” said Mandy Smith, executive director of Westminor County Penn State Extension Master.

Broccoli and Colorado, owners of the Kiski Plaza Garden and Food Center in Liechberg, are also good to plant now.

Pessie adds Brussels sprouts to the list.

“Fall is a good time to plant more trees and shrubs,” Pace said.

“Weeds are small, the ground is still warm enough to plant, and we often have enough rain,” he said. In the spring, I look forward to planting some of the toughest trees or shrubs, such as the Japanese maple.

Moving from the garden to the grass, September is a good time to take care of the area if your grass is thin or narrow, Pessie said.

He also said that it is preferable to divide and replace ornamental grass and sunflowers during the harvest season.

For some winter colors, it’s time to plant small bulbs that will bloom in January and February, Pessie said. Some of her favorites include winter aconite, winter cross, snowflakes, and usch shingles.

“The latter is like a small delphinium that grows in late February,” she said. I love it even though you don’t see it here often.

Because the plants are small, she recommends planting these bulbs in high visibility. take up

Take a closer look

Pace loves to walk in your flower garden while still in production to assess their attractiveness.

“You can walk in the garden with pen and pencil and make notes,” she said. “I look at each place and decide what I like or what I want to change for the next year.

“You can love it the way you like it, or ‘I want more blue, or more pink’ or ‘This isn’t really here. ‘

Extend flowering time

Cultural fall, such as Mothers, Esther and Cauliflower and Cabbage, are now on sale, Vargo said, adding popcorn in the garden, but the life of summer flowers can also be extended.

He said that a single row or garden cover could be a good investment because they did not know when that first snow would hit.

“You may have a cold night, then it will be good for the next two or three weeks,” he said. Your flowers will last longer than you expected.

“Covers stay warm overnight. You can freeze the garden by 3 or 4 degrees and that’s usually just what you want. ” “Just make sure they are firmly on the ground. They do not want the cold wind to come under them. ”

Raising a dead head also helps the plant to continue producing, Smith said.

To dig or not to dig

Whether or not to dig bulbs before paddling depends on the individual plant. Some people, such as Kana Lily, Dahlia, and the Elephant’s Ears, say it can be difficult to jump underground.

She added, “I and many of my friends have found that if Glidella is planted deep, it will come back every year,” but the tropical species must emerge from the ground.

“We still have relatively cold winters, so it’s good to dig your bulbs,” Smith said.

To prepare light bulbs for the winter above, remove the loose waste and place them in a cool, dry room to dry.

“If they are dry, they are less likely to become infected,” says Pesi.

When drying, they can be packed in boxes filled with peas sand or paper or hung in filter bags and stored directly in a cool, dry place such as a garage or basement.

Pesesi recommends naming them so that they can return to the ground where spring is coming.

Putting the garden on the bed

These days, there are two schools of thought on what to do with vegetables, especially perennials – is it better to clean them in the fall or leave the plants until spring?

“Allowing your flowers to go to seed depends on how your garden looks or if you want to plant yourself,” says Pessie. “If you don’t have a damaged garden, you can let this happen. Provides food and cover for birds.

“Some people prefer a good, orderly garden,” she says. “Everyone has a different philosophy. There is nothing wrong with that. ”

In recent years, Penn State Extension has been recommending leaving the garden until spring, Smith said.

“Insect larvae benefit by giving them places to drink,” he said. “Leaving breeders for the natives gives them something to eat in the winter.

“We think of the garden not only for your benefit but also for the ecology of other creatures,” she said.

Vargo, on the other hand, thinks it is better to clean up old plants, to avoid possible plant pollution and insect pests.

It is also recommended that the ground be turned on one side before cooling, even if the weather is cold.

“Insects lay eggs and expose them to the cold. They don’t get it all, but it helps control many. ” Everything they clean helps prevent disease.

In the case of the garden, Pessie and Vargo recommend that the old plant be sown after the old plant has been cleared. Alternatively, it can be sprayed with clean straw or mules.

The cover crop maintains weed growth, but the roots remain in place and help loosen the soil. In the spring, grass needs to be turned into soil to add nutrients.

Shirley McMarlin is a staff writer for the Tribune-Review. At 724-836-5750, Shirley can contact smcmarlin@triblive.com or via Twitter .

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