No time to garden this summer? Try a bit of Fall gardening in more comfortable temperatures.
And these projects all give a great return on investment!
It’s a great time of year to plant salad greens. You can start an indoor herb garden that will give you fresh herbs all winter to turn an everyday meal into something special. It’s also a great time to get compost going for next spring. Lots of opportunities to make something good happen when you grow something! Even affordable gifts!
1. Grow some herbs indoors.
Never buy fresh herbs again! Well, a lot less anyway. Fresh herbs add a lot to recipes in flavor and looks. Try growing some that you use often. You can grow some for gift giving too! It’s an affordable gift that most cooks are very happy to receive. These look nice in small terra cotta pots, but I also like them in colorful coffee cups. If you don’t have any orphan cups to use, the resale shops, like Good Will, have tons of them for very cheap. You do have to drill a drainage hole in each (use a drill bit made for ceramics) because herbs don’t like to have wet feet. Pretty for a windowsill!
Click here for Organic Gardening’s “10 best herbs to grow indoors.”
Click here for tips at Woolly Green to grow herbs indoors.
Fall is wonderful weather for growing all sorts of lettuce and fresh greens. Plant seeds every week to keep a supply of fresh greens coming to your table over the next couple of months. Many lettuces are “cut and come again.” Just use a scissors to cut the leaves leaving about an inch left above the ground. They will grow back new leaves for you to enjoy. Almost like free organic salad ingredients!
3. Get some compost going!
It’s easy to put any dried plant material into a pile. Layer with grass clippings and you have the start to some great compost. You’ll probably be cleaning up the yard and plantings anyway, just toss it into the compost. By spring you’ll have some rich garden soil to help everything grow that much better! Free high quality soil!
4. Plant some cheery spring bulbs.
Put them anywhere you’d like to see daffodils, tulips, hyacinths, etc. greet you in the spring. Don’t wait until it’s totally freezing out there to start planting! I’ve done it and it’s no fun. If you plant them before it’s freezing they will have a better chance to develop roots before winter. Get yourself a little curved trowel to make this an easy job. Just insert the trowel and push it a little forward to life the dirt a bit. Slip the bulb in the slit with its roots down. Lift the trowel out and press the dirt back down. Done! To get a naturalized look, toss a handful of bulbs and plant them where they land.
5. Plant garlic cloves.
You have to plant them in the fall to use by next spring and summer. If you can find Elephant Garlic, it regrows itself (via runners) forever–highly unusual for garlic. If you use a lot of garlic in cooking, this could come in handy! Click here for a detailed tutorial at Organic Gardening. on planting garlic.
For fall gardening activities by zone (in the US) click here for a good to-do list at Organic Gardening.
6. Fall is a great time to plant a tree.
In fact it’s the best time! Trees are on sale and your tree will be well established by spring. Trees add value to a house and provide shade to lower your air conditioning bills. Plant now and watch your investment grow! Click here for more details.
Reap the Benefits!
Whatever you do now will reap great benefits. You can also get some sunshine (vitamin D) and exercise while working in the garden. It’s great for your psyche too! Click here to learn how playing in the dirt actually makes you feel better.