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Horticulture/Fall Cleanup

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Fall cleanup is the process of "putting the garden to bed" for the winter.


  • Before leaves fall
    • Identify trees and shrubs with diseased foliage, treat or remove as necessary
    • Remove any weeds, with priority to those that will be in seed when leaf cleanup is done
    • Prepare compost area
    • Check lawn for weeds, treat and reseed if necessary
    • Dig tropical plants and prepare them for overwintering indoors
  • During leaf fall
    • Keep hardscapes clean for safety
    • Frequently pick up leaves from trees and shrubs with diseased foliage
    • Dig or mulch tender plants as necessary
  • After leaves fall
  • Cutting back
    • What to cut back
    • What not to cut back
      • Winter interest
      • Insulation
      • Bird habitat concerns
  • Fall pruning
    • What to prune
    • What not to prune
  • Heeling
    • In ground
    • In containers
  • Mulching
    • Deciding whether to insulate or expose
  • Composting
    • Shredding
    • Storing browns
  • Bulb planting
    • Separate chapter
  • Transplants and new plants