fall okra stalks, still producing

5 Fall Gardening Tasks for a Better Spring Garden

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The year before last we were super lazy about our fall gardening tasks and last year ended up being one of our worst garden years ever. Everything that happens in the garden teaches us. This helped me learn that fall garden tasks are some of the most important tasks for garden success. It was a great lesson for a beginning gardener!

peas growing in the fall garden

Fall garden chores list

Fall garden tasks can set your spring up for amazing success. I love how loamy and moist my soil is when I prep the garden and prepare the yard for winter. There are a few things you can do now to save you a ton of headaches later.

Task number one in the garden is to pull weeds! It’s so hard to weed in the heat of the summer, but now that it’s cooling off, spend a few hours for a couple of days getting all the weeds out.

Removing the seeds and roots before the winter will help weeding next year be so much easier. Weed the garden and yard on a nice morning after a good rain shower so you can get as much of the roots as possible. Spending time weeding regularly in the fall will enable you to get the weeds out before winter sets in.

Another fall garden task is collecting seeds. Check all your overgrown plants, edible and flowers, for brown seed heads that you can collect in envelopes and replant next year.

Flower heads, sunflower seeds, okra pod, pepper and tomatoes, just about everything left over can be dried and planted again. Save a few green beans for seeds for next year.

Garden clean up

Cut your plants off at the base instead of pulling them out root and all. The roots will stay in the ground and decompose over the winter adding nutrients to the soil that will help your spring garden grow. Peas and beans have nodules on their roots as well that will put extra nitrogen into your soil for a heavy feeding crop such as corn the following year.

Mulch for a great spring garden

Laying down a heavy layer of mulch will protect your garden soil from erosion, keep in the moisture so the beneficial organisms in the soil will flourish throughout the winter and keep any weed seeds from germinating.

Mulching is one of the best things we do in our fall garden tasks that make our garden awesome in spring. The year before last when we had a horrible spring garden, that was one thing we were super lazy about doing and we swore we would never skip this fall garden chore again. Click here to see how to mulch your garden for free

mulch of leaves in a raised bed garden in fall garden tasks

Take care of your tools as part of your fall gardening tasks routine. Sharpen anything that you dulled down during the garden season. Put a little oil on the blades of your tools to keep them from rusting over the winter season. Find a good, dry storage place for them and make sure you don’t forget anything outside. If you take care of your tools, they will last you for years to come.

a garden shovel by a fence and a hose

The best lesson I’ve learned from the garden is that what I do in the fall gardening tasks makes a huge difference in how my season will go. I add compost and mulch to every bed.

We have over 50 beds and containers, so we just take care of a few each week, but we try to get them all finished before Christmas. Usually, we are still working into January, but it is well worth the effort. Winterize your garden properly for a wonderfully productive garden.

Planning a fall garden in Oklahoma

Gardening in the heat of summer in the south is tough. The bugs, the heat, the drought. Fall gardening in Oklahoma can be much more pleasant.

Here are the planting times they list for each kind of plant:

  • Beans, Bush Aug 10-20 Seed
  • Beans, Cowpea July 15-Aug 1 Seed
  • Beans, Pole July 15-30 Seed
  • Beans, Lima Aug 10-20 Seed
  • Cilantro July 15-Aug 1 Seed
  • Corn, Sweet July 15 Seed
  • Cucumber Aug 10-20 Seed or Plants
  • Eggplant July 15 Plants
  • Pepper July 15 Plants
  • Pumpkin July 15-30 Seed or Plants
  • Summer Squash July 15-Sept 1 Seed or Plants
  • Winter Squash July 15-30 Seed or Plants
  • Tomatillo July 15 Plants
  • Tomatoes July 1-15 Plants
  • Beet Aug 1-15 Seed
  • Broccoli July 15-Aug 15 Plants
  • Brussels Sprouts July 15-Aug 15 Plants
  • Cabbage Aug 1-25 Plants
  • Chinese Cabbage Aug 1-25 Seed or Plants
  • Carrots July 15-Aug 15 Seed
  • Cauliflower Aug 1-25 Plants
  • Collards Aug 1-Sept 1 Seed or Plants
  • Garlic Sept 1-Oct 15 Bulbs (cloves)
  • Kale Sept 1 Plants
  • Kohlrabi Sept 1 Plants
  • Leaf Lettuce Aug 1-15 Seed or Plants
  • Leek Sept 1 Seed or Plants
  • Onions Sept 1 Seed, Sets, or Plants
  • Peas, green Aug 15-Sept 1 Seed
  • Rutabaga Aug 15-Sept 15 Seed
  • Spinach Sept 5-25 Seed
  • Swiss Chard Aug 1-Sept 15 Seed
  • Turnip Aug 1-Sept 15 Seed

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  1. I need to practice these methods as the seasons arrive. I tried to prepare this year but I think I have to go through the process and give it another try next year. These are great tips though! I’ll be practicing these soon enough.