November is nearly here, but that doesn’t mean your garden tending is finished. Even though the days are growing colder and shorter, you can still plant! New trees, shrubs, and perennials tend to do well in the fall because the cooler temperatures provide ideal conditions for plantings to put out new roots. Make sure when you plant any new material that you’re watering every day or every other day (depending on the temperature outside) to give your new additions a good head start before winter sets in. You can plant new material right up until the ground freezes.
Do not prune your azaleas, rhododendrons, and other spring-flowering shrubs in the fall. These shrubs have already set bud for next spring, and cutting them back will prevent them from blooming next year. You can, however, continue to fertilize your azaleas, rhododendrons, hemlocks, and arborvitaes with Holly-Tone fertilizer. Any other trees and shrubs can be fertilized with an MNLA 8-8-8 fertilizer.
If your trees are susceptible to insect infestations, apply dormant oil spray now to prevent them from overwintering. Dormant oil kills pests by smothering them, preventing them from maturing and wreaking havoc on your trees when they start leafing out. The most common fruit trees that benefit greatly from dormant oil are apples, crabapples, plums, quince, and pears. Be sure to spray dormant oil when the temperature stays above 40° and will remain that way for 24 hours, and choose a 24-hour period where no rain or high winds are expected.Follow these tips to ensure your trees and shrubs stand a good chance of overwintering successfully.