We are now heading into our first full month of Fall and there are many great flowers and vegetables to plant.  This month we have also included a fruit.   Two things you need to know is when the first frost date is for your region.  This will help you with your planting deadlines.  The second thing is being familiar with your hardiness zone, so you can figure out if a plant will do well in your region.

Listed below are flowers and vegetables that are great to start planting in October:

 

Flowers

Peony – Peonies are one of the most popular garden plants for temperate parts of the US.  They have gorgeous fragrant flowers that can grow 5 to 7-inches and bloom in May and June.  Peonies are grown from bare roots or tubers that are planted 2 inches deep and 3 to 4 inches apart in well-drained soil.   They flourish in full-sun in hardiness zones 3 – 8.  As Peonies produce flower buds, you may see ants crawling on the unopened buds. The ants will not harm the plant. They simply like a sticky substance that covers the buds. Peonies may take three years to hit their stride, flowering freely, but they can survive for up to 50 years.  Get more information on Growing Peonies.

Spring Flowering Bulbs – Spring flowering bulbs are easy to plant and one of the first things to bloom in your spring garden.  There are many different types of these bulbs to plant including these popular ones:  Allium, Crocus, Daffodils, Hyacinths, and Tulips. Depending on where you live these bulbs should be planted before the first hard freeze.  Go to this link to find out more about when to plant your bulbs.  A good tip to determine how deep to plant your bulb is to multiply the height of the bulb by three. Plant the bulbs pointy side up in a location with great drainage.  Remember this is a great activity to do with your children.

Here is more information with tips on planting spring-flowering bulbs.

Trillium – Trillium plants are a perennial, woodland species, which are part of the Lily family.  They are easy to grow from a bare root and are slow to develop and spread.  It can last up to 25 years.  The plant does need sun in the early spring, so do not plant them in a shade only location. The flower has 3-petals, which are mainly found in white.  Trillium is a wildflower that blooms in early spring. The flowers are very delicate and should not be picked.  Trillium is one of many plants whose seeds are spread by ants. 

Vegetables

Many of the same vegetables that you planted in September can be planted in October.  Those include Leafy Greens such as Spinach, Kale, Lettuce, and Swiss chard.  Some other vegetables you can plant this month include:

Artichoke – Many people think this large plant is a giant weed and is only grown in California. If you choose to grow this plant it takes up a lot of room and it also has a long growing period.  A mature plant grows 3 to 4 feet tall and up to 6 feet wide.  They require full sun, so don’t plant them too close. Artichokes grow in hardiness zones 3 – 11. In warmer zones 7-11 it is considered a perennial and an annual in the cooler zones.  Most of the plant is edible but the best part of the plant is the young flower bud in the center.  Learn more about Growing Artichokes.

Carrots – Carrots are a cool-season vegetable and are considered a root vegetable.  It is possible to grow carrots in the fall for a winter harvest as long as the soil does not freeze solid and the temperature stays above 32 degrees Fahrenheit.  While orange is the traditional color for Carrots, there are varieties that come in crimson, purple, yellow, or white. Carrots do well in small gardens and even raised beds.  You can also grow them in containers. Plant your Carrots in well-worked and well-drained soil and a location with full sun to partial shade.  While the roots are growing underground, the foliage of the plant needs the sun.  Get more tips on Growing Carrots.

Kohlrabi – Kohlrabi is a member of the cabbage family and is an odd-shaped plant.  It’s stems come in green, purple, and white and is topped with a rosette of long-stemmed blue-green leaves.   Kohlrabi is a fast-growing cool weather plant that you will be able to harvest weeks after planting.  The vegetable is milder and sweeter than a cabbage or turnip and high in fiber and vitamin C.  The plant needs at least 6 hours of full sun and plant it in well-drained, moist soil.

Fruit

Blueberries – Blueberries can be planted in the fall, but the bushes need to be in the ground and mulched before the first frost at the onset of winter.  One advantage of planting in the fall is it is in-ground before the spring rains arrive in certain parts of the country.  Blueberry plants grow slowly and it will take about 10 years for the bush to mature to full size, but this means the bush will live a long time. It will take 2 to 3 years before you get a large harvest.  The plant is very attractive and can make a beautiful addition to your garden. Here is more information on compact fruit plants including Blueberries. 

Let us know what you are planning to grow this October.

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