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November Gardening Tips

Lawn Care

Apply ferti•lome Winterizer to cool-season grasses (fescue, rye or bluegrass) in November. Aside from September, November is the next best time to fertilize cool-season lawns. This application of Winterizer’s 25% nitrogen keeps lawns green longer into the winter and is stored by the grass to green it up earlier in the spring without excessive top growth … meaning less mowing!

It’s not too late to control some broadleaf weeds to reduce the spring crop. Choose a warm day with no chance of rain to spray ferti•lome Weed Free Zone on warm-season and cool-season lawns.

This fall, when temperatures are cool and grass growth slows down, it’ll be time for the last mowing of the season. Mow your lawn to a height of 2". If the weather has been dry, water occasionally. 

Spring Bulbs

November is the perfect month to plant tulips. Other bulbs (daffodils, crocus, hyacinths) can also be planted. Choose a pleasant day and enjoy planting bulbs that will bring early spring cheer to your yard.

We recommend planting with Back To Nature Cotton Burr Compost, Hi-Yield Bone Meal and Hi-Yield Dutch Bulb Food. Cotton Burr Compost mixed with the soil will improve drainage. Good drainage is essential for bulbs; they will rot in heavy soil. Mix the Bone Meal into the planting hole for a slow-release phosphorus source, then put the Bulb Food on the soil surface. The Bulb Food can also be used in spring as bulbs are emerging. An additional boost can be given to your bulbs by watering them in with ferti•lome Root Stimulator. Plant bulbs with the pointed end up and water in. If the weather is dry, water during warm spells through the winter months.

Trees & Shrubs

Continue planting trees and shrubs. Use ferti•lome Root Stimulator and MYKE, a beneficial fungus, to improve root development when planting. Mulch around the plant to help retain moisture and keep soil temperature even.

If you haven’t fertilized your plants this fall, use ferti•lome Tree & Shrub Food now. Spread it under your trees from a few feet beyond the trunk to out past the drip line (where the branches end), then water in thoroughly. If the weather is dry, plants will need a good soaking before going into winter. Water once a month if there is no snow or rain and the ground is thawed. Trees and shrubs planted last spring may be fertilized after the leaves drop this fall.

Evergreens such as pine, spruce, juniper and yew; and broadleaf evergreens such as azalea, euonymus, boxwood, pyracantha and holly need special attention in dry winters. Soak them about once a month when the weather is warmer. Fertilize evergreens in late winter or spring with Tree & Shrub Food.

For extra protection, spray evergreens (and broadleaf evergreens like holly, boxwood or euonymus) with Bonide Wilt Stop. This is a natural pine-oil emulsion that acts as a protective coating, holding in moisture on plant foliage and stems, substantially reducing moisture loss during periods of stress. It dries to a clear, odorless film without interfering with plant growth. Also use Wilt Stop on Christmas trees and greens to keep them fresh throughout the Christmas season.

Thin barked trees like maples, fruit trees and newly planted trees will benefit by having their trunks wrapped with tree wrap for winter. These trees are prone to sun scald which is caused by the warm winter sun that, combined with the cold temperatures, can cause small splits in trunks which expand as the trees grow next year.


Start your bulbs now for Christmas flowers:
1) Choose a pot that is 2" wider than the bulb so there is about an inch clearance all around the bulb.
2) Use a well-draining potting mix.
3) Bury 2/3 of the bulb.
4) Soak the soil then let the soil dry well between waterings.

Amaryllis bulbs are very individual and bloom in their own time. Usually it takes 6-10 weeks, but some may bloom in a month and some may flower for Valentine’s Day, so be patient. Remember that larger bulbs produce larger and more flowers, and if you want blooms soon, choose bulbs that have started to grow a bit.

Winter Mulch

All plants—especially tender ones like roses, crapemyrtle and perennials—will benefit from being mulched in the winter.

Cedar mulch, cotton burr compost, cottonseed hulls, bark, or even straw can be used to keep the soil temperature even, reducing the freeze and thaw fluctuations that are so damaging to plant roots.

You may mulch now or wait until we get several hard freezes to apply mulch. The goal is to keep the soil frozen. Gather your supplies now so you’ll be ready when the time is right.

Grafted roses (hybrid tea, etc.) need to be mulched to a depth of 12". Save most rose pruning for spring, but now you can prune down some of the longer canes which are in the way or might whip in the wind.

Printable Tip Sheets

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