Sooke Garden Club: time to plan

It's a great time for planting/transplanting - and rethinking

Three typical heads of Russian garlic.

Okay, summer’s over. Done. Kaput. It’s time to stop lamenting and wishing the weather had been better, that this or that plant had sparkled instead of looking like death on a stick, or that the potato crop had produced spuds larger than ping-pong balls. The gardening year, however, is not yet over. In fact, in addition to completing the usual fall cleanup activities, now is the perfect time to begin shaping the garden/yard for next year.

We live in a climate that spring flowering bulbs adore – lots of winter rain followed (usually) by a dry summer. Plant these bulbs now, in the ground or in containers, and you’ll be rewarded with weeks of welcome colour starting in late winter or early spring. Just remember that bulbs can always benefit from a bit of bone meal, and they need to be in well-drained soil or they’ll rot. Remember, too, that deer don’t eat daffodils/narcissi, so these beauties can be planted outside the always-too-full protected areas. And speaking of bulbs, get your garlic crop into the ground as soon as possible. Planting in early fall gives garlic a great start and results in larger heads come mid-summer harvest.

Looking for summer shade and fall colour in the form of a tree? Visit local nurseries now to see what the leaves look like at this time of year. Planting trees (and shrubs) now is ideal because the roots will have months to settle in and grow strong before warm weather forces growth in the spring. Nature will do months of critical watering for you and setback will be minimal.

Have peonies, Siberian iris or daylilies that are overcrowded – and who doesn’t? – or that you would just like to have more of because they are so absolutely gorgeous? Now is the time to divide and replant or share them with friends. Oh, and that plant resembling death on a stick … well, if it’s a shrub, small tree or hardy perennial that hasn’t been performing well for a couple of years, it may just be very unhappy in its current location. Consider moving it now to somewhere more accommodating, e.g., into better/worse soil, more/less sun, drier/wetter ground.

These are but a few of the many outdoor activities that entertain gardeners in the fall while they are still busy finding ways to preserve the summer harvest. So many questions … so many ideas … and so much experience in our little piece of world. In fact, this month’s meeting of the Sooke Garden Club will be an opportunity for members to share their experiences through: Gardener’s Forum. What worked, what didn’t, and why? The annual photo competition and the annual fall plant sale are also on the schedule.

Join us on Wednesday, Oct. 26, 7:30 p.m., in the Sooke Legion Hall.

New members are always welcome. Information at: sookegardenclub@yahoo.ca or call 250-642-0058.

Contributed by

Loretta Fritz

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

West Shore RCMP, ICBC target speeders and aggressive drivers

Hotspots include Sooke Road, Veterans Memorial Parkway and Colwood Corners

The long road to recovery will have a few bumps

Some things will never be the same after the COVID-19 pandemic, local experts say

Sooke council approves new funding for chamber of commerce

A $16,000 service agreement to be created

Sooke council delays vote on Whiffin Spit memorial wall

Sooke district council has again delayed a decision to erect a memorial… Continue reading

B.C. legislature coming back June 22 as COVID-19 emergency hits record

Pandemic restrictions now longer than 2017 wildfire emergency

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world in ways that would have… Continue reading

COVID-19: B.C. too dependent on foreign food production workers

New B.C. job site links unemployed with farm, seafood work

B.C. businesses ‘can’t shoulder burden’ of COVID-19 sick pay

Trudeau’s plan should be tied to federal emergency aid

RCMP remind public to leave dogs chilling at home on hot days

Dogsafe has designed a Dog in a Hot Car Responder Checklist

Another Asian giant ‘murder hornet’ found in Lower Mainland

This is the farthest east the invasive species has been found so far

B.C. girl left temporarily paralyzed by tick bite sparks warning from family

Mom says parents need to check their kids when they go camping

PHOTOS: Loved ones reunite at an oasis on closed U.S.-Canada border in Surrey

Officials closed the park in mid-March over coronavirus concerns

Feds delay national action plan for missing and murdered Indigenous women

Meanwhile, the pandemic has exacerbated the violence facing many Indigenous women and girls

Most Read