Thursday, November 10, 2011

Gardenin' with Gertie - Fall Cleaning

Goo’day all, Gertie Geoduck here! I’ve got another gardenin’ thought to share with you  - fall cleaning is for gardens, while spring cleaning is for our homes.

We’ve had our first serious frost here in Snooterville Junction. That signals deciduous trees and shrubs to ‘head south for the winter’, well, to their roots any way. As these plants shift sugars and energy down into their root systems to overwinter, their leaves turn color and fall off. I look forward to seeing Mother Nature’s brilliance every year.

This also sends a signal to us gardenin’ geeks – time for ‘fall cleaning’. If there are any plants that you have recurring pest (disease or insect) issues with, you can reduce that issue by cleaning up any/all leaf and twig debris from under and around that plant. Pick it up now, and dispose of it.

Here in S-J we have garden waste collection, and, most of our garden ‘goodies’ go to a composting company where their process ‘cooks’ the compost to the point that most pathogens and weed seeds are deactivated. Although I have my own compost bin, I try to put only ‘clean’ clippings and material in it, as I can’t guarantee that there is enough consistent heat within the pile to really ‘cook’ things. Either way, we can then use that nutritious compost to fortify our planting beds next spring – what a Snooter-abulous way to recycle and reuse!

Miss Mary Jane-cat agrees that fall cleaning in the garden gets us a great head-start to a Snooter-ific spring (and she is more than happy to supervise)!

Happy Snooter-gardenin’!

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