Whether you are ready for summer to be over or not, it is time to think about how to keep your plants blooming through fall. Gardening Guru Ciscoe Morris has some helpful tips for keeping your garden looking great into fall.

Many of our gardens look parched and are filled with dead and fading flowers as we go into the fall season. It doesn't have to be that way. A little effort now will go a long way toward making our gardens colorful and lively, flowering wonderfully throughout the autumn season. Here's some steps you can take to keep your garden looking great at the end of the year.

  • Dead head: Remove spent flowers on annuals and perennials that re-bloom. If you let them go to seed, they'll poop out, but if you frustrate them by removing spent flowers, they'll keep pumping out blooms until late in the season. It will make your plants look better as well.
  • Fertilize: Plants in containers will burst back into active growth and flowering with a shot of fertilizer at this time. Use a soluble houseplant fertilizer this late in the year, for quick reaction.
  • Roses are a special case. Most experts will tell you it's too late to fertilize roses. It's true that fertilizing this late can force late growth and delay hardening off for winter, but if you fertilize now roses put on amazing bloom displays this time of year. If you fertilize now with an organic lawn food and alfalfa meal, an early frost could kill your rose. That rarely happens, however, and even if it does, think of all of the new roses you'll have to choose from next spring!
  • Water: Most of us cut back on our watering in fall, but plants need water more now than ever. Keep plants in containers and actively growing perennials well watered and they'll look fresher and bloom way more than if you allow them to get too dry.
  • Edit the garden: Remove stalks and leaves that have dried up or look horrible. Leave seed pods that are attractive or feed the birds. A little bit of editing can go a long way when it comes to keeping the garden looking great in fall.

Good fall gardening!

Gardening with Ciscoe airs Saturday mornings onKING5.

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