Although typically November should be when we start to cool down, it is apparent Mother Nature has a mind of her own. Winter annuals should be planted only when the weather starts to get a little cooler than current temperatures. The following is a check list for gardeners for the month:
Trees: This month you should be removing dead fronds and coconuts on palms trees. Palms should be pruned at a minimum of twice per year. (May prior to hurricane season & November before holidays). If you are unsure how to prune, contact an certified arborist for help.
Pests: Until e month of May watch for brown patch and large patch, fungal diseases that cause areas of grass to turn brown. Since treatment is difficult,prevention with proper cultural practices is key. Now that temperatures are lower, use dormant oil sprays to control scale insects. Monitoring the garden for insects and disease should be done on a monthly basis. Not all insects cause damage, some are beneficial and eat damage causing insects. If you are not sure, hire a Florida certified pest control operator.
Irrigation: Although most residential & commercial properties have automatic sprinkler systems they should operated based on rainfall. Rain sensors (automatically shut off during rain) to irrigation systems should be checked and adjusted to lowest setting. To much water will cause fungus & disease in our landscapes & turf. Plants need less supplemental watering in cooler weather. Turn off systems and water only if needed.
Lawns : To prevent cooler weather weeds from growing set mowing heights at the highest recommended heights, St. Augustine & Bahia turf @ 4″, Dwarf St. Augustine @2.5″. Mulching the cut grass will add nutrients back to the roots and soil. To prevent or minimize disease in turf, proper cultural practices should be used.
Plants: Plant trees, shrubs, and perennials and water until established.
Fertilizer: The health and vigor of your landscapes depend upon applying the right amount of fertilizer at the appropriate times. Too little or too much fertilizer will cause problems for the growth, appearance, and health of your lawn. November is the last month when fertilizer should be applied. While some yellowing of older leaves in plants is normal, yellowing of new growth usually indicates a micro-nutrient deficiency. Fertilizer can correct the problem.
Annuals: Create a display of fall colors with cool season plants. Some to try are new guinea impatiens, pansy, strawflower, cape daisy and pentas.
Vegetables: Continue planting cool weather vegetables like lettuce, carrots, broccoli, and kale this month. If you’re looking to plant flowers this month, pansies are a great cool weather bedding plant. Now that temperatures are lower, use dormant oil sprays to control scale insects in your garden. Cooler weather also means your plants will need less supplemental watering, so turn off automated sprinkler systems and water only when needed.
Herbs: A wide variety of herbs like cooler, dryer weather, including dill, sage, cilantro, thyme, parsley and cilantro con be planted from seed or plants.
I hope the list we have prepared for you helps you with tips to improve your gardens & landscapes. If you need help regarding your landscape, we at Garden Services are fully licensed & insured to handle all of your irrigation, landscaping, lawn maintenance and tree service needs whether it’s a residential, commercial or homeowner association property If you ever have any questions, please don’t hesitate to email me and I’ll be happy to answer any questions you may have. Special thanks to UF/IFAS extension offices for some helpful information provided to this post.