Top Five Garden Tasks for Fall

Fall is a busy season in the garden.

In many places, this time of year is defined by cooler temperatures and increased rainfall which makes it an ideal time to garden.


Here are five jobs I prioritize each autumn:

  • Plant bulbs


  • Plant trees and shrubs


  • Prepare new planting areas and/or add mulch (chopped leaves are perfect!) to existing beds


  • Sow seed for cool-weather plants like sweet peas, snapdragons, poppies, swiss chard, etc. (more about this to come for our Library!).


  • Divide and propagate: I like to do this in very early fall so new divisions have a chance to settle in and grow roots before winter dormancy.


One traditional autumn task I DO NOT prioritize is cleanup.

Instead of cutting back the dead or dying herbaceous layer in my garden (from perennials like nepeta or ornamental grasses), I leave the material to insulate the soil, provide shelter and food for wildlife, and for visual interest (frosted seedheads can be beautiful).

I DO cut back and clean out the dying foliage of my peonies as they can harbor disease, and I cut back or tie in long canes of roses that might be whipped around in winter winds.

Explore all our Black Barn Garden Library posts here.


Posted on

August 3, 2020

1 Comment

  1. Katie Brewster

    Looking forward to info on sowing seed for cool weather plants:)


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