Vermont Garden Journal

An orange fruit hanging from a tree
GomezDavid / iStock

The tropical-looking persimmon is hardy in Vermont, has avocado-like leaves and tasty orange fruits that are ready to harvest ...  now!

Two scarecrows with a background of fall foliage
timeless / iStock

Leaves are falling, so it's time to do something (or nothing!) with them.

A orange cone in the middle of a pinkish-purple flower
Del Henderson Jr / iStock

Folks with perennial flower gardens might already have a go-to method for readying their beds for fall and winter, but there are new ways to clean up your plot that are more in tune with nature.

Pink and white flowers
mtreasure / iStock

With daisy-like flowers growing on thin, leggy stems, Japanese anemones are also known by the poetic moniker, "wind flower." This perennial not only looks beautiful in your landscape, it's also hardy and easy to maintain. 

A shrub in burlap for winterization
lamiel / iStock

Frugal folks will enjoy the fact that, come fall, any trees and shrubs that you plan to plant are probably on sale at most garden stores and nurseries! And fall is the practical time to plant them, too, as the air is cool and the soil will stay warm enough for roots to start getting established.

Green plant
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Fall is a great time of year to plant cover crops to protect the soil over the winter. Come spring, you will have done your garden a favor and given it a head start, as the cover crops can add organic matter and help control weeds.

A yellow flower
Hardyplants / Wikimedia Commons

Late summer's yellow-blossomed favorites like goldenrod, asters and rudbeckia are certainly lovely, but if you're looking for golden petals plus drama, pick a posie that can grow as tall as some adults! The cup plant is a native species and grows up to 6 feet tall, with scads of daisy-like bright yellow flower.

colorful assortment of fruits and vegetables
AlexRaths / iStock

Sharing what you've grown in your garden feels good. And late summer means your garden abounds with actual, real live vegetables that you have grown! There are some great options for sharing the fruit (and veggies) of your labor beyond just dropping off your extra cucumbers onto a neighbor's porch.

calendula flower

Gaze out on your garden and take in all the beauty that you've planted! The annual flowers are really showing their colors now and perhaps you want to grow them again next year.Depending on the flower, you can either save its seeds or root them.

pink flowers on a green bush
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You've seen this shrub around town blooming its little head off with hibiscus-like flowers. The Rose of Sharon isn't a rose at all, but it is a reliable bloomer and adds great late summer color.

cucumber plants
Elena_Mikhailova / iStock

Recent heavy — though quick — rainstorms, paired with heat, have created monsters in the garden! And those gigantic squash, cukes and melons need containing, and they need you to ensure the fruits that are forming can ripen before the first frost. Say hello to *pinching.*

Red, green and purple leafy plants
JitkaUnv / iStock

You might see this shade garden plant so often as you stroll around your neighborhood that you might be inclined to not notice it. But the coleus is just the sort of plant that you should take note of, because of how versatile it truly is.

A yellow flower
marcophotos / iStock

Abundant, multi-flowering helenium is hardy to Zone 3 and nearly drought-tolerant. Known by its common name, sneeze weed, this plant used to be harvested, dried and then made into a powder which some people then used as snuff to promote sneezing!

Japanese Beetle on a leaf

The adult Japanese beetles are out. They're hungry and they're not picky eaters! This insect will munch on more than 300 different plants in your garden and flower bed. So before you lose a good chunk of your produce and posies, you can do a bit of work to control them by knowing how and when it's most effective to do so.

Orange-striped Colorado Potato Beetle on a leaf

Insect pests are out in force in the vegetable garden. One primary line of defense is searching for and destroying the egg clusters, to help stop an infestation before it gets going. The key is knowing how to identifty each type of insect's eggs before they hatch and take over.

A red poppy
Peter Engisch / VPR

When you think of this certain flower, you might recall a scene when Dorothy from "The Wizard of Oz" begins to feel very sleepy or perhaps you learned to recite this poem of remembrance.

The delicate, papery-petaled Flanders or Iceland poppies are in bloom right now and Charlie Nardozzi has tips for their care.

A hand putting food scraps into a bin.
Vesnaandjic / iStock

This past week, four of Vermont's counties are dry enough to be considered officially in a moderate drought, according to the United States Drought Monitor.

Blackish purple berries.
Annimei / iStock

Pies, buckles, tarts and crumbles all call for different sorts of berries, and you may well already be growing raspberries and blackberries for all your baking. Perhaps now is a good time to add another berry to your repertoire: The elderberry!

A white flowered plant.
css0101 / iStock

If you are a gardener who is squeamish about squashing garden pests or using sprays and insecticides, there is another way to protect your plants from critters! 

Blue flowers in a green bush
SkyF / iStock

Looking for an easy-care plant that shows off colorful flowers, beautiful foliage and even seed pods? Look no further than baptisia australis, or false indigo. This perennial checks off all those boxes and more!