November is a great month for gardening. The cooler fall weather has set in, hurricane season is over, and we finally have a wide-open planting calendar for temperate veggies.
The fall bird migration is in full swing too. Our winter residents have arrived and are busy eating pest insects (and leaving behind some organic fertilizer).
Plant Tropical Fruit Trees. But before you do, get to know their characteristics first. Here are some useful tips on sitting tropical fruit trees that I've gathered over the years:
Mulberry Mayhem. Don't put a mulberry next to the driveway unless you like purple stains on concrete (and on your car).
Beware of Banana Plants. Especially by the clothesline—they may stain the wash.
Jackfruit Tip. Jakfruit by the front door may look nice, but who wants to get bonked on the head with a 30 lb. (or more) fruit when they step outside?
Bountiful Brassicas. Plant any brassica (broccoli, cauliflower, beets, etc) you like now without having to worry about afternoon shade. The same goes for lettuce and other greens.
Plant Your Roses. They thrive in cool, dry conditions like we have now.
It's Getting Chilly. Replace warm season flowering annuals with cool season ones such as poppies, snapdragons, carnations and strawflowers, all of which you will find in nurseries and garden centers now.
Planting Preparations. At the start of the month you still have time to plant tomatoes, peppers and eggplant. Later in the month, the temperatures may be just a bit too cold to get them established.
Pruning Berries. If your RASPBERRIES have finished their current crop, prune them down to soil level for the late spring crop.
Pest Problems. The beginning of the dry season heralds the start of a different batch of pests. Spider mite comes to mind. They seem to prefer the dry weather. Scout your garden often and thoroughly. Problems caught early are easier to deal with than ones that get out of hand. A bit of soap and water will handle spider mite, mealy bug, and other sucking insects if you spot them early.