October Gardening Calendar Header

If you already performed some of these tasks in September – then no worries! More seasonal tasks sometimes can overlap from month to month.


  • Clean and store garden tools
  • Grab a locally grown pumpkin & carve a Jack O Lantern!
  • Bring houseplants inside and give a dose of Fertilome Systemic Insecticide granules to kill any pests living in the soil.
  • Remove weeds now and don’t allow them to overwinter. Overwintering can encourage even more weed growth next year!
  • Start a compost pile of your vegetable garden scraps. (Avoid composting any diseased plants)
  • Bring your houseplants in for the winter. Read more about bringing houseplants in here.


  • Apply step 3 Fertilome Lawn Food Plus Iron 28-4-4
  • If you haven’t put down any pre-emergent weed preventer, this is a great time to sow grass seed! The cooler temps, sunny days and increased rain is perfect for germination.


  • Although trees and shrubs can be planted year round, Fall is the BEST time for planting! By planting in the Fall, you give your new trees & shrubs 3 seasons to develop strong root systems before the heat and stress of summer. Plus, since trees and shrubs are typically not using any energy towards creating new limbs, leaves, or buds – they can put that energy into the root system.
  • AVOID trimming Spring blooming shrubs such as Azaleas, Forsythias, Lilacs, Rhododendrons. You can read more on fall pruning here.


  • Make sure that your fall crops are getting enough water. As the temps cool, less water will be needed but don’t avoid watering completely.
  • Plant cover crops in the garden, if desired. Cover crops can be tilled into the soil next year
  • You can still plant fall crop starters though typically it is too late for seeding outdoors at this point.


  • Plant perennials now to prepare for beautiful Spring blooms! Like trees & shrubs, it’s the best time to get these beauties in the ground!
  • After first hard frost, cut back perennials that have faded and browned such as Hosta, Coneflower, Daylily, & Sedum. (Have a question about a particular perennial? Give us a call!) Read more on fall pruning here.
  • Do not cut back fall grasses until Spring.
  • If you want to keep your Banana trees, we recommend cutting to the ground and covering with 12″ of a lightweight mulch or pine straw to protect through the winter.
  • October is a great time to divide certain perennials such as Hosta, Daylily, Sedum, & Peony.  Read more about dividing perennials at Costa Farms.


  • Plant mixed pots of Pansies, Violas, Cabbage, Kale & Swiss Chard. Get creative and use perennials such as Creeping Jenny, English Ivy, Rosemary or garden Sage, Coral Bells & perennial grasses.
  • Purchase and plan where you want to put your Spring blooming bulbs. You will plant these at the end of the month/beginning of November but the best selection of bulbs is always early. Read more about planting bulbs here
  • Clean and store your non-frost proof ceramic, terra cotta, and concrete pots if possible. Keep them in a garage, basement, or under cover.  Do not stack terra cotta planters as they can expand and become difficult to separate.


  • It’s almost time to winterize your water garden. We have a water garden winterization seminar in the Fall. You can also talk to one of our pond specialists about any questions you have about winterization.
  • Always keep some Dechlorinator “Pond Detox” on hand in the case of an accidental condition of overfilling with tap water. Often pond owners will add water to the water garden from their tap water source having chlorine and other metals present. Any time more than 20-25% of the pond’s water volume is added new, a dechlorinator product should be added to ensure that your fish are not killed. Chlorine in heavier volume will kill pond hard fish. Most pond owners have experienced accidentally leaving on a water hose too long to only find out that they don’t have a dechlorinating product on hand. We advise to always keep some on hand for when this may occur.


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