The weather profile remains dry and drought conditions may continue through the fall.

Tasks:

• Monitor rainfall and adjust water accordingly to keep soil moist for new plantings.

• Put organic mulch around permanent plants to conserve water and prevent weeds.

• Trees need to be deeply watered as they enter dormancy.

• Mushrooms often appear in the lawn in the fall as growing conditions are favorable. If you do not like them, rake or pull them out and discard.

Pruning:

• Prune shrubs and trees to shape. Pruning junipers during cool weather prevents sunburn.

• Deadhead and shape rose bushes to promote final fall bloom.

Fertilizing:

• Feed cool-season lawns with time-release granular fertilizer.

• Fertilize flowering annuals and perennials to promote fall growth.

Planting:

• Continue staggered planting of cool-weather vegetables such as chard and spinach.

• Perennials: agave, dianthus.

• Bulbs, corms, tubers: brodiaea, crocus, freesia.

• Fruits and vegetables: onions, parsley, radish.

• Annuals: larkspur (Consolida), flowering kale, Primrose (Primula).

• Trees, shrubs, vines: Goldenchain tree (Laburnum) , pomegranate (Punica).

Enjoy now:

• Annuals and perennials: dianthus, alyssum (Lobularia).

• Fruits and vegetables: artichokes, cauliflower, figs, grapes, kale, limes.

• Trees, shrubs, vines: crape myrtle, bayberry (Berberis), beautyberry (Callicarpa).

• Fall color: maidenhair (Ginkgo biloba), goldenrain tree (Koelreuteria).

Things to ponder:

• Store unused fertilizers and pesticides in a dry, warm place. Pesticides should be stored in a separate, locked cabinet or container.

Drought tip:

• Postpone unnecessary fall planting until rainfall replenishes soil moisture and supplemental watering is no longer needed.

Source: Adapted from “A Gardener’s Companion for the Central San Joaquin Valley,” 3rd edition, currently available from Fresno County Master Gardeners for $30. Gardening Questions answered at mgfresno@ucdavis.edu Prepared by Judy Parker, Master Gardener UCCE Fresno County.

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