The end of summer reminds me of my childhood. The fun days at the community pool, BBQs, the final vacation trip celebrated over Labor Day weekend. Along with any trip comes the countless question, “Are we there yet?”
That impatient mentality hangs on each summer’s end for gardeners and general folks alike. We’re ready for cooler days, BCHS football and yes, our fall gardens. Veggies and herbs can both be started now, if you haven’t already begun. The late, great Linn Mills always told me that fall gardens can be planted all the way into the beginning of October. That should suit all the procrastinators out there.
So, what to plant? Almost all root veggies: beets, radishes, carrots, garlic and onion. If you love greens like I do, plant plenty of spinach, mustard, turnip, kale, Swiss chard and collards. As for herbs, just about any that you can imagine can be grown. Although we’re a couple of months away from Thanksgiving; sage, rosemary and thyme are the perfect holiday food flavorings. And they can be started from seed or cuttings. Mint for teas and desserts, basil, chives and oregano will round out your herb garden.
Autumn is the perfect time to plant trees. There are so many to choose from. My favorites are Pink Flowering Acacia, Crepe Myrtle, Bottle Tree or good ol’ Pomegranate. Speaking of pomegranates, most are good and ripe around town for the picking, if they haven’t already been grabbed.
The excessive heat we have had over the summer did some damage, and in the coming weeks, you’ll start seeing new growth sneaking out through the fried foliage of your plants, shrubs and trees. I actually saw several species of Mojave native plants and trees go into a “heat dormancy” this summer, where they lost all greenery and for the most part, looked like they had been cooked to death. Now, they’re showing new life, and all is good again.
Enjoy the reprieve from the heat, and here’s to a successful fall garden. Happy Gardening!