Listed are a few chores that can be done in the September flower garden.
1) Discontinue deadheading annuals if you want them to reseed.
2) Cut back perennials if they are done blooming except those that provide winter food for wildlife.
3) Discontinue fertilizing plants.
4) Plant spring bulbs in late September.
5) Weed garden and rake up debris.
6) Cut injured or deceased parts of perennials off.
7) Discontinue deadheading perennials that provide winter food for birds.
8) Dig and divide daylilies and hostas.
9) Dig out any bulbs that are not winter hardy.
10) Look at your garden and make notes of wishful improvements.
Hanging annual flower baskets are fertilizer hogs. There are so many recommendations on what to use for fertilizer, from long acting fertilizers to making a tea solution. Probably the best fertilizers are the fast acting ones like Miracle Gro. Once the plant starts filling the baskets, it may be necessary to fertilize them at least once a week or more. Google fertilizing hanging baskets and see what type of fertilizer appeals to you. If you want your basket to look like the ones you see hanging from the light poles in cities and villages, you are going to have to fertilize and water faithfully.
What is deadheading? As flowers start fading, pinch or cut off the flower stem below the spent flower and just above the first set of full, healthy leaves. Should flowers be deadheaded? That depends on the flower. Generally most annuals and perennials will benefit from deadheading. If a flower blooms continuously, like zinnias, cosmos, and coneflowers, it will help the flower set more blooms. Flowers that bloom only once, such as foxgloves and hollyhocks should not be deadheaded as the spent flowers need to produce seed for next year’s bloom. Please note that it is NOT necessary to deadhead. Many gardeners find it relaxing and fullfilling to deadhead; to other gardeners it is a monotonous chore. If you are unsure if you should deadhead, check the flower out on the internet or call our nursery.