• Unpredictable Weather Keeps Southern California Gardeners Guessing in October - Wednesday, September 29, 2010 at
  • Unpredictable Southern California weather that can quickly turn from extreme heat to chilly cold can leave gardeners unsure about how to plant or maintain their gardens. Regardless of weather conditions, a variety of vegetables, trees, shrubs and bedding plants are ready for planting and tending in October, say experts at Agromin, an Oxnard-based manufacturer of earth-friendly soil products made from recycled organic material from over 50 Southern California communities.

    Modify Watering Schedule: Hot, windy weather can dry out a garden in a matter of hours. If Santa Ana winds occur, water you vegetable and flower garden daily, lawns every other day.

    Cut Back perennials: Thin out perennials including Shasta daisies, callas and yarrow. Prune overgrown and dead stems almost to the ground. When the plants grow back, they will fuller with a less straggly appearance.

    Plant Lawns: Now is the time to replace lawns, whether by seed or sod. Win the fight against crabgrass by removing the affect lawn area and seed or sod with grass that matches your lawn. For best results, wait until a cool spell occurs before planting.

    Herbs' Second Season: Cold weather herbs ready for planting include garlic, oregano, parsley, rosemary, chives, cilantro, dill, fennel and thyme. Extend the life of summer basil by keeping their flowers trimmed. By doing so, you can enjoy fresh basil well into winter.

    Add Deciduous Fruit Trees, Roses: Fall is the best time to add additional trees to your yard. Roses and deciduous fruit trees are plentiful at nurseries and are usually available at sale prices.

    Give Citrus and Avocado Trees a Boost: Feed your citrus and avocado trees in fall. Citrus trees need nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium and magnesium. Avocado trees need the same nutrients so you can often buy a single type of fertilizer for both tree types. Avocado trees shed leaves regularly. Leave them around the base of the tree, as they will make a natural mulch.

    Plant Cool Season Vegetables: By now, most summer vegetables have stopped producing. It's time to remove them and plant winter vegetables including cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, garlic, peas, spinach, Brussels sprouts and lettuce. Plant them in well cultivated and amended soil with proper irrigation.

    For more gardening tips, go to http://www.agromin.com.

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