THE PLANT INDUSTRY LOOKS AT THE ENTIRE MONTH OF SEPTEMBER AS THE BEGINNING OF FALL
We like to look at the fall planting season starting on the first of September and going through the end of November. Like the astronomical definition, our fall planting season begins with the autumnal equinox. Equinoxes are the result of two things: the earth’s tilt and its orbit around the sun. Fall is not officially here until Thursday, September 22nd.
Although many gardeners plant trees and shrubs in the spring, many of us plant in the fall to take advantage of all this wonderful season has to offer. To that end, here are five good reasons why you want to plant this fall:
WARM SOIL TEMPERATURES AND COOLER AIR = HAPPY PLANTS
Just about every hardy plant in our area would prefer moderate temperatures to summer’s scorching heat. At the same time, plants like to sink their “toes” into warm soil. As of this writing, our soil temperature is sitting at 82 degrees. Fall is the only time of year when you get warm soil temperatures with cooler days.
FEWER INSECT PESTS AND DISEASES IN THE FALL
Leaf chewers and leaf suckers are at a minimum in the fall. These insects are more active in the spring and summer than they are in the fall. Having fewer insect and disease issues makes for less stressed plants that root in better.
LESS WATER STRESS FOR PLANTS
Typically, summers in Central Virginia are hot, humid, and dry. I hope September is not like that. But, on the positive side of thinking, with lower heat temperatures our soil will stay moist longer coupled with the fact that our plants are at the beginning stages of going dormant which leads to less water needed by our plants.
ESTABLISHING STRONGER ROOT SYSTEM
Fall planting establishes shrubs and trees by encouraging root growth. Because the soil is still warm, the roots continue to develop. This stronger root system gives the plants a “head-start” to growing and developing more quickly.
FOR THE EXERCISE – BOTH PHYSICALLY AND MENTALLY
Working outside in the gardens and landscape is great exercise for our bodies, minds, and souls. Many of us find happiness being in our gardens and around plants.
TO LEARN MORE ABOUT FALL PLANTING
Mark your calendar for
SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 17
FALL GARDENER’S FAIR
Our very own Nick Atkinson will be giving a free educational talk at 12 noon on FALL IS FOR PLANTING and giving tips on proper planting techniques in order to have your plants thrive.
Fall can be the ideal time to plant shrubs and trees, whether you are adding to your landscape, replacing plants or starting a whole new look. If you decide to plant this fall, you will be amazed at how beautiful your landscape will look next spring.
PLANT A LITTLE HAPPINESS!!!!!