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What To Do In Your Flower Garden This November (Late Fall)
There are still some garden chores to take care of in November, even if you’ve already seen your first snow.
November gardening chores vary significantly by region. For those in the coldest climates, there’s nothing green in the November garden. Others can’t wait for the cool days of fall gardening.
But even if your garden has seen its first snowfall, there are still garden tasks to be done. There are leaves to rake, last minute bulbs to plant (as long as the ground isn’t frozen), roses to care for and, unfortunately, insect pests are hardier than you might think.
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Flower Garden Tips for November
- Dig and divide dahlias, if you didn’t do this in October. After the first frost has blackened the foliage, carefully dig up the tubers without damaging them. Divide them, making sure each tuber you save has an eye on it.
- Wait until the ground freezes before mulching your roses. Protect them from winter damage by mounding a 6- to 12-inch layer of soil around their crowns before the ground freezes. After the ground freezes, add a layer of leaf mulch to insulate them until spring.
- Continue cutting back your perennial borders. Decide ahead of time which plants you want to leave up for winter interest, and which ones you need to leave up to protect the crown of the plant. Cut the rest back.
- Collect seeds from any non-hybrid perennials that you’d like to grow more of next year.
- Remove any cold-hardy annuals that are spent.
- Collect seeds from any non-hybrid cold-hardy annuals that have formed seed capsules.
- Mulch all garden soil that is bare.
- Leave ornamental grasses up over the winter to provide winter interest and food and cover for small birds.
- Fertilize roses one last time early this month.
- Prune rambling or climbing roses near the beginning of the month if they’ve suffered any storm damage, or aren’t secure, and might whip around in the winter wind. Otherwise, don’t prune your roses from now until spring.
- Take hardwood cuttings of deciduous shrubs such as hydrangea, viburnum, weigela, and evergreen shrubs like juniper, holly and yew.
- Lift and divide irises, daylilies, and lily of the valley.
- If you’ve stored any tender bulbs, corms, rhizomes or tubers for the winter, check the storage medium and give it a light misting if it’s drying out. Go light with the water so you don’t rot the bulbs.
- Tie down any loose stems of climbing hydrangea, wisteria, honeysuckle or trumpet vine. This will lessen the chances of winter storm damage.
- Rake up fallen leaves from groundcovers as they can smother the plants over the winter.
- If you’re growing fall-blooming chrysanthemums, leave the stems and foliage in place unless the plant has had a major insect attack or suffered from a disease. The foliage will help protect the crown of the plant over the winter.