Not your Mama's Fall Garden Clean Up

In the old days, fall was the time for a thorough clean-up of the garden. Not anymore.

Way back when (when we didn't know better) we would close the gardening season by chopping back every single living plant and then...

We would make sure every single leaf was raked out of the garden, then burned or bagged and shipped off somewhere.

 

What the heck were we thinking!?

 

We’ve come a long way since then.  We now understand that insects and pollinators, including bumblebees, butterflies, and mammals, need the cover of leaves to overwinter. The leaves also break down with the season to become soil once again.


No need to ship them anywhere.


Burning? It's a fool’s mission (polluting the air and killing the beneficial insects).


Native bees, beetles and other insects use the hollow stems of woodier plants to tuck in for the winter. That’s one reason we don’t cut everything down. Instead, random cuts are made to a few stems—leaving the height to 12-18” and take care not to clip a large amount of any plant grouping. That’s because we now appreciate the beauty of the garden in winter. To look out onto the garden to see plants shimmering after a frost or generously topped with soft fluff after a snowfall is absolutely beautiful.  After fresh spring grown, and vibrant summer colors, it’s supremely satisfying to experience and appreciate the beauty of the garden year-round. Enjoy.

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