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2009 September gardening list and tips

September 2009 gardening tips are compiled from past conversations with University of Minnesota Extension Educators through 2004, 2006, 2007 Yard and Garden News calendars, and through email conversations with Ask a Master Gardener volunteers:Barb Harlan, Theresa Rooney, Claire Kari, and Darla Medic-Johnson.

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Photo: (from left to right) Sneezeweed and Joe Pye Weed in the September garden. Karen Jeannette

While some might consider September the end of another gardening season, it might also be considered a beginning for enjoying the harvest of the garden or planning next year's activities. This time of year you may notice some central themes helpful in remembering seasonal garden and yard care tips, such as: watering, cleaning up, moving, harvesting, and preparing for next season, just to name a few. As always, this September gardening list is far from all-encompassing, yet a good reminder of where to start.


Providing adequate water in fall is especially critical for increasing plant survival in winter and providing year-round health:

  • Help your plants prepare for the long winter by adequately watering plants. This is especially true for trees and shrubs planted in the last 5 years. Provide these plants 1.0 - 1-.5 inches of water per week.. See Fall Watering advice for more information.
  • Follow this month's Lawn care checklist: late summer - early fall, (#3 out of the seven fall lawn care practice to consider)

Cleaning Up

A little clean up now can prevent a lot of weed and disease problems in the future.
  • Remove weeds and diseased plant materials from your gardens. Do not compost diseased plant materials in your home compost. For more information on other fall clean up recommendations, see Fall is Clean Up Time. 
  • Remove overripe fruits from plants or the garden so as not to encourage insects or other stray critters.

Moving plants

Harvesting & Storing

  • Apples are ripe when the starches have converted to sugars. You can feel the starch on your teeth when you bite into an unripe apple. Just because it's red doesn't mean it's ripe. If you want to become more proficient in your apple tasting abilities, see  Apple Tasting Training with host University of Minnesota apple breeder David Bedford,

Preparing for next season

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