To Do in January

Lawn Care
•    Keep tree leaves from collecting on your lawn.

•    Spread ashes from the fireplace around gardens and bulb beds where soil pH is below 6.0.  Avoid acid-loving plants.  (3 lbs of ash = 1 lb of limestone)
•    Now is the time to put out limestone if needed (it takes about three months for lime to change the soil’s pH)
•    Fertilize houseplants as needed.

•    Asparagus crowns can be planted at this time.

•    Hardwood cuttings of many landscape plants like forsythia (yellow bells), flowering quince, weigela, crape myrtle, juniper, spirea and hydrangea can be taken this month.

•    Prune grape vines
•    Any dead or diseased wood can be pruned out anytime of the year.
•    Weeds or unnecessary trees should be removed from the landscape.

•    None

Other Activities
•    Poinsettias should be placed in the sunniest room in the house.
•    If you have received your soil recommendations, apply lime as suggested.  Don’t apply fertilizer until spring.
•    Order fruit trees and grape vines now if you wish to plant them in February and March.
•    Continue putting the leaves from your yard into a compost bin.

To Do in November


  • Trees and shrubs can be transplanted in the autumn.
  • Plant one year old asparagus crowns in the vegetable garden this month.
  • Finish planting spring-flowering bulbs.


  • Time to trim existing asparagus foliage. Cut to the ground after the foliage is killed by frost.
  • Cut back and clean up frost-killed perennials.
  • When cutting holiday greener, use sharp pruners to make cuts above a bud or side branch.
  • Prune out older canes on blackberries and raspberries.
  • Do NOT prune shrubs in September, October, or November


  • None

Lawn Care

  • Mow your cool season or tall fescue lawn as needed.
  • Keep tree leaves from collecting on your lawn.


  • Water your cuttings in the coldframe as needed.
  • You may want to try your hand at air layering on some of your house plants like dieffenbachia or dumb cane.

Specific Chores

  • Soil test results should be back if samples were sent in September or October. Apply the recommended lime to the areas in need of liming. Wait until spring to fertilize.
  • Remember that peak season soil test fees begin December 1, so get your samples in early this month to avoid the fee.
  • Check with the local Extension office for the recommended fruit varieties for the area.
  • Order fruit trees and grape vines this month for a February or March delivery and planting.
  • Remember to water your evergreen trees and shrubs thoroughly before winter set in, particularly if weather conditions have been dry.
  • Look to see if screens or windbreaks are needed around your home.
  • Continue filling the compost bin with the fallen leaves.
  • Look for yuletide plants as gifts. Remember, some plants like poinsettias should be placed in the sunniest room in the house.
  • Consider giving your family gardener a holiday gift to use in the garden.

To Do In August

Lawn Care
•    Treat all lawns for grubs with the recommended insecticides if needed.
•    1/3rd of the growth should be removed when mowing warm season grasses. Cool season grasses should be mowed at  3 – 3.5 inches.
•    Try to change direction when mowing your lawn.  This will help strengthen the roots system and expose different sides of the plant to sunlight.

•    Be sure to fertilize strawberries with nitrogen this month.
•    Do NOT fertilize shrubs this month.
•    Now is a good time to take soil samples from your lawn especially if you plan to put out cool season grasses.  Soil boxes can be picked-up at the County Extension office.

•    Vegetables to be planted in August: beets, Chinese cabbage, cucumber, kale, kohlrabi, lettuce, mustard, radish, rutabaga, spinach, squash, and turnips.
•    Transplant broccoli, cabbage and cauliflower plants in mid-August.
•    Continue repotting overgrown houseplants.
•    Plant pansy seeds in flats this month so they can be transplanted to the landscape in September.
•    Perennial seeds to sow this month: hollyhock, delphinium, and stokesia
•    Spider lily, colchicum, and sternbergia bulbs should be planted this month.

•    Late summer is NOT a good time to prune trees and shrubs because pruning will stimulate new growth.  That new growth will not have enough time to harden before it turns cold.  Late January and February are the best times to do major pruning.
•    Any dead or diseased wood can be pruned out anytime of the year.
•    Excessive growth on wisteria vines should be stopped to encourage blooms.  Cutting back runners and root pruning can do this.  Use a sharp spade and insert the blade to its full depth in a semi-circle about 6 feet from the main stem.

•    Watch shrubs for the following insects: spider mites, and lace bugs.
•    Use recommended herbicide to control poison ivy, honeysuckle, greenbriar, kudzu, trumpet creeper, and wisteria if desired.
•    Continue with rose spraying program.
•    Continue fungicide program for fruit trees and bunch grapes.
•    Peach and nectarine tree need a trunk spray for peach tree borers at the end of August.
•    Spray the following vegetables if insects are observed: broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, and squash.
(Pesticides should be used sparingly!  Use only when needed and always follow the label)

Other Activities
•    Prepare a planting plan if you intend on doing some fall landscaping.
•    Now is a good time to construct a compost bin, if desired.
•    Irish potatoes can be dug up this month.

To Do in July


  • Continue side dressing your garden vegetables.
  • July is the month we recommend giving landscape plants a second (last) feeding of fertilizer.
  • Take soil samples form your lawn areas for testing. Soil boxes are available at the County Extension Center.


  • Plants of brussel sprouts and collards can be set out in mid-July.
  • You can begin your fall vegetable garden this month. Plant beans, carrots, brussels sprouts, and tomatoes in July.
  • Start broccoli, cabbage and cauliflower plants in peat pots to transplant into the vegetable garden in mid-August.
  • Begin repotting overgrown houseplants.


  • Prune “bleeder” trees like maple, dogwood, birch and elm this month.
  • Prune the fruiting canes of raspberry and blackberry plants after harvest is over. Cut canes at ground level.
  • Prune off dieback limbs on hybrid rhododendron, azalea, mountain laurel, and blueberry.
  • Trim hedges as needed.
  • Continue pruning white pines and narrowleaf evergreens like juniper early in the month.
  • Remove faded flowers on flowering perennials to encourage a second flowering.
  • Pinch your chrysanthemums the first week only!
  • Do NOT prune spring flowering shrubs now.


  • Spray the following landscape shrubs for the following insect pests: arborvitae (bagworms), azalea and pyracantha (lace bug).
  • Spray for Japanese beetles as needed.
  • Continue with rose spray program.
  • Spray your tree fruits and bunch grapes on a regular basis.
  • Spray the following vegetables if insects are observed: cucumber (cucumber beetle), squash (aphids), tomato and eggplant (flea beetle).
  • Spray woody weeds like poison ivy, honeysuckle and kudzu with a recommended herbicide.
  • NOTE, spray only as needed, and follow all instructions on pesticide labels.

Lawn Care

  • Remember to change direction when moving your lawn. Travel north to south on one mowing and east to west on the next cutting.
  • Continue feeding your zoysia lawn with fertilizer. Do NOT give tall fescue or bluegrass lawns any fertilizer this month.
  • Maintain 3″ mowing height on fescue.


  • This month is still a great time to take semi-hardwood cuttings of azaleas, holly, rhododendron and many other shrubs.
  • July is an ideal time to divide and transplant your iris and daylilies.

Specific Chores

  • July is a good month to see if and where your home can use some additional shade trees.
  • Blossom-end rot may be seen on tomatoes this month. Two factors – too little water and too little lime /calcium the soil – may be the reason.
  • In dry weather, both your vegetable garden and landscape plants will benefit from a good soaking watering. Slow watering will penetrate the root zone better. Apply 1″ of water early in the day.


To Do in June

Lawn Care
•    Fertilize warm-season grasses like Bermuda, Zoysia, and St. Augustine if you haven’t already done so. (Cool season grasses such as fescue should NOT be fertilized at this time.)
•    A 1/3rd of the growth should be removed when mowing warm season grasses.
•    Core aerate your warm season yard two days after a good rain or irrigation.
•    Zoysia lawns can be started this month

•    Fertilize or sidedress vegetables as needed.
•    June is the only month to fertilize centipede grass.  A ½ pound of 15-0-14 per 1,000 sq.ft is recommended however; the fertilizing needs can be better determined with a soil test.
•    Dogwoods can be fertilized at this time.  Be sure to follow the soil analysis so that you don’t over-fertilize.

•    Vegetable to be planted in June: beans, lima beans, southern peas, peppers, sweet potato, pumpkins, and tomato.
•    Brussel sprouts and collards can be planted at this time for transplanting in mid-July.
•    Trees like dogwoods can be transplanted at this time.  Use proper planting techniques when doing a transplant.  Dogwoods for example, grow best in soils which contain lots of organic matter.

•    New growth on white pines can be pruned.
•    Outgrown hedges can be pruned.
•    Pinch off garden mums till mid-July.
•    Narrowleaf evergreens like junipers and arborvitaes can be pruned.
•    Bigleaf or florist hydrangea can be pruned when the flowers fade.
•    The dieback on hybrid rhododendrons, azaleas, and blueberries can be pruned out
•    Lastly, don’t forget to pinch your chrysanthemums to encourage branching.

•    Watch shrubs for the following insects: bag worms, leaf miners, aphids, spider mites, and lace bugs.  Bag worms already enclosed in their bags will need to be picked off by hand and destroyed.
•    Japanese beetles are also emerging and can be controlled.
•    Watch tomato leaves for dark spots which could be blight.  Spray with the appropriate fungicide if observed.
•    Use recommended herbicide to control poison ivy, kudzu, and honeysuckle if desired.
•    Spray the following vegetables if insects are observed: cucumber (cucumber beetle), squash (squash borers and aphids), tomato and eggplant (flea beetle), broccoli, cabbage and cauliflower (worms).
•    Continue pest control program for fruit trees and bunch grapes.  .
•    Continue with rose spraying program.

(Pesticides should be used sparingly!  Use only when needed and always follow the label)

Other Activities
•    Renovate strawberry beds after the final harvest.
•    Build a coldframe for rooting your shrub cuttings.
•    Water lawns in the early morning during dry periods.  Don’t forget watering lawns late in the evening encourages diseases.
•    Also, vegetables gardens should be watered about an inch a week.