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Garden Calendar

Transition Into Fall Planting

September 05, 2002

Count on the hottest weather of the year this month, but also get ready for our best planting season. Fall planting begins after the middle of the month, peaks in October and lasts into December. The days are getting shorter and the weather will be growing cooler, so if you have grand plans, start soon.

Don't ease up on the watering quite yet--it's still summer in that respect. Those who live in fire-prone areas should remember that the Santa Ana winds that fan fires typically start this month.

As soon as possible, get rid of weeds where you plan to plant. Water the area thoroughly several times--as if you are trying to help a new lawn to sprout. This gets perennial weeds such as Bermuda grass (devil grass) growing and sprouts weed seeds. A week or two later, when everything's up, spray the area with Roundup or Finale. Both herbicides move from leaves to roots, killing the whole plant but not affecting the soil.

Follow directions carefully (herbicides work best during warm, sunny weather), and give them time to work. Then you are ready to prepare the soil and plant, and you won't spend hours trying to get weeds out of your new plantings.

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From the Los Angeles Times California Garden Calendar

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