Eco-healthy living-how to prepare your garden for fall

With the rainy season and school year in Oregon underway, Autumn is a great time to clean up garden beds, manage soil and compost, prepare sod and minimize problems in the new growing season.

Fall garden clean up and winter preparation is essential to the long-term health of your yard and garden. Fall is a time to welcome change, preparation, and maturity. Here are some fun eco-friendly yard projects that you can do with school age children, in addition to new eco-healthy gardening tips and tutorials from our partners at Oregon Metro. 

Overseeding Your Lawn

Sometimes a yard dries our or dies from the brutal summer heat. The fall is one of the best times to overseed your lawn- by simply adding grass seed to my lawn. The cooler days, warm soil temperatures and increased precipitation combine to create the perfect conditions for seed germination and growth. If done right, you will have a beautiful lush lawn next spring without having to use unhealthy garden chemicals to control weeds and moss. 

  • Use a rake to remove moss and hand tools to remove weeds
  • Sprinkle ½ inch or less of compost over lawn and rake in
  • Add a local seed mix using 25% of the recommended rate on label
  • Cover with thin layer of compost
  • Water frequently and stay off lawn until new grass is established 

See also https://www.oregonmetro.gov/tools-living/healthy-home/healthy-home-and-yard-online-learning

A Good Time to Grow Vegetables

Plants can be grown up until the first freeze or even after in mild climates- Whether this means using new vegetable starts or finishing the growth of already planted crops. Fall crops such as tomatoes, cabbage, broccoli, lettuce, radish are good fall crops. 

A Good Time to Cleanup:

Additionally, the fall is a good time to get outside and clean up your yard. This means raking up some leaves and mowing them up. The resulting mix of nitrogen and carbon makes an excellent cover for a vegetable garden, or serve as compost for the Spring. It is also a good time to pull up the weeds. You can use an eco-friendly weed killer by mixing salt and vinegar and spraying it directly onto the plant’s stem. 

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