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Common Fall Gardening Mistakes

Jenn Smith

Posted on October 24 2019

Let's face it, gardeners make mistakes along the way - especially those that are just starting out as hobby gardeners; but hey, we live and learn, right? 

When the weather begins to cool down in fall, gardeners may neglect certain gardening tasks that will cost them the next growing season. Here are a few common gardening mistakes in the autumn:

1. Not raking leaves. 

Grass will get matted down with heavy snow and leaves if they are not raked properly. Even worse, the grass will not have proper air flow and will get all sorts of bacterial diseases that will contaminate soil. 

Raking leaves should be done away from homes to keep away ticks that may be hiding underneath leaves for insulation and shelter. 

2. Planting spring bulbs too late in the fall season

Fall is a great time to start planting spring bulbs; however, if done too late, the ground will be frozen up and will not produce a decent sized root system for growth.

3. Pruning plants too soon or not at all

Just because leaves have fallen off plants, and stems are bare, doesn't mean the plant is "dead." Not pruning plants at all can spread plant diseases.

4. Not Removing Weeds

Removing weeds from flowerbeds is essential for keeping a healthy looking landscape and for preventing the spread of plant diseases. 

5. Not Removing Dying/Dead Plants

Leaving vegetable plants in the garden past their prime can lead to diseases, fungus and other problems down the road. Fruits left on plants can drop seeds as they begin to decay and leave gardeners with problems the next growing period. It's best to remove dead plants sooner rather than later.

6. Not disinfecting tools, trellises and garden stakes

Gardeners may think that once they are done using gardening tools for the season, they simply need to stash them away; but this couldn't be further from the truth. Gardeners should take 1/2 a cup of bleach and a gallon of water to wipe down cages, stakes and other tools before storing them away. This will preserve the tools, remove possible fungus and diseases from the blades, and increase longevity of life.