NDSU Extension - Morton County


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October 26, 2020 Last Minute Chores

Kelsey Deckert, Extension Agent/Horticulture



Last Minute Chores


Did we just skip Fall?  I think many of us asked that question this past week with the snow that Mother Nature brought us.  It’s not unusual for our area to have snow in October already, but it felt like the Fall the first day of October.  Then all of sudden last week, we got a preview of Winter.

The good news is this week warmer temperatures are forecasted. Let’s enjoy the days this week.  If you felt like you ran out of time to do some chores for winterizing landscape, take advantage of the weather.

There are simple tasks to complete for winter.  To start, now is a great time to do a soil test in our gardens.  If your garden didn’t seem to thrive this year, a soil test will reveal the foundation you are working with.

If you had some carved pumpkins or decorative pumpkins outside that are losing their vigor, rather than just tossing them, toss them into the composting pile if you have one.  This is a great way to give back to your garden next year. If your pumpkins are still firm and have been protected, you may still utilize them. Roasting seeds can be a fun project for your family.

Let’s make sure to give our trees some protection this winter.  Younger trees are susceptible to sunscalding.  Sunscalding occurs when temperatures warm up in the winter and then drop low again.  The warm temperatures activates the cells and the low temperatures will cause them to die, resulting in cracking in the bark.  This occurs on the southwest side of the tree.  To prevent this, put a white tree wrap on trunks of young trees.

Lastly, it is a good idea to not forget about all the tools we use throughout the growing season. Clean and sharpen garden tools, pruners, and saws.  Adding a light coat of oil to our tools will extend the longevity of them.

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