- Keep them in bright light but out of the direct sun.
- Keep them in a cool to warmish spot but away from air vents.
- Check the water frequently. It's surprising how quick they dry in the home.
- Remove or puncture pot coverings to allow good drainage.
- Water when the surface soil begins to feel dry to the touch for all but the holiday cactus. It is best watered when the soil becomes a little dry to prevent rots.
- Withhold the feedings until the new year. Most can be given a light feeding in January except the holiday cactus. Feeding for this plant begins in March.
- Lawns have a good green look but need water during the drier months ahead.
- Operating a sprinkler systems is limited to once a week in most areas.
- Dry spots can be moistened as needed with a hand-held hose where permitted.
- Repair bare spots left from piles of hurricane debris with sod or plugs.
- Fall is a good time to install new lawns or patch large areas due to weeds or insects.
- Feeding time is over but iron or minor nutrients can be applied to keep the lawns green.
- Brown or large patch has been spotted in St. Augustine & zoysia; control with a fungicide.
- Use chemical weed controls for patches of weeds that cannot be controlled by mowing.
- Mowing can be reduced to every other week in most landscapes.
- Over seeding with ryegrass is normally not needed except for a temporary winter lawn.
Fruit and vegetable gardening:
- Warm season crops may linger through fall due to late plantings.
- If crops stop producing or are affected by cold replant with the cool season crops.
- Soils were compacted by torrential rains; loosen and add organic matter before replanting.
- Small but successive vegetable plantings guarantee continual harvests.
- Tomatoes, peppers & eggplants stop producing during cool weather; replant in March.
- Continue herb plantings in ground or in containers; they love the cool weather.
- Harvest herbs frequently to encourage fresh growth; preserve or share extras.
- Caterpillars and mites are frequent fall pests; control with natural sprays.
- Start seeds of the cool season crops as needed to have transplants available.
- Trellis peas and similar vining crops to harvest the most from garden plots.
- Gardeners with limited space can grow their favorite vegetables in large containers.
- Use clean containers and fresh potting soil to reduce pests and encourage growth.
- Feed vegetable gardens every 3 to 4 weeks with composted manure or a general fertilizer.
- Feed container plantings every other week or use a slow release fertilizer as labeled.
- Delay deciduous fruit tree prunings until next month; citrus pruning until mid February.
- Lots of twigs are hanging in trees; remove or let them gradually fall.
- Remove large limbs that may fall to damage property or injure residents and visitors.
- Wood chips from fallen trees are best added to compost piles to decompose before use.
- Thick layers of fresh wood chips bind up nutrients that inhibit plant growth.
- Fresh wood chips can be used as walkways and once decomposed in planting sites.
- Fall and winter are a good times to replace lost trees.
- Replant with a majority of hurricane proof trees and shrubs.
- Shrubs heavily damaged by wind and debris many need pruning to near the ground.
- Revive dreary looking landscape with cool season color.
- Consider fresh color combinations like pink petunias, dusty miller & snapdragons.
- Avoid planting the same flowers each year in the same spot to reduce pest problems.
- Incorporate organic matter with older annual beds and sandy soils to encourage plant vigor.
- Add holiday poinsettias to the landscape in their pots to easily remove during extreme cold.
- Fertilize annual flowers monthly or use a slow release fertilizer as labeled.
- Apply a slow release fertilizer to container plantings for a winter feeding.
- Pruning time is over for most plants; out of bounds shoots can be removed as needed.
- Feeding time is over for all trees, shrubs and vines.
- Water new plantings plus annuals and perennials frequently to keep the soil moist.
- Divide and replant perennials.
Foliage & house plant care:
- Move container grown plants in landscapes, susceptible to cold, to a warmer location
- Remove yellow leaves from plants already affected by cold and give a warm spot to regrow.
- Look for poinsettia selections with new bract colors to display in the home.
- Give holiday plants a cool bright location away from air vents.
- Over watering Christmas & holiday cactus can cause them to rot; wait until the surface dries.
- Delay fertilizing holiday and foliage plants until the warmer weather returns in late winter.
Vegetables: Beets, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, collards, horseradish, lettuce, mustard, onions, peas, radicchio, radishes, spinach, Swiss chard and turnips.
Flowers: Alyssum, baby's breath, bacopa, begonia, bush daisy, calendula, California poppy, candytuft, carnation, chrysanthemums, delphinium, dianthus, dusty miller, foxglove, geranium, goddetia, hollyhock, Iceland poppy, licorice plant, lobelia, million bells, ornamental cabbage & kale, pansy, petunia, salvia, shasta daisy, snapdragon, statice, stock, sweet pea, verbena and viola.
Herbs: Anise, arugula, basil, bay, chives, cilantro, coriander, dill, fennel, garlic, lavender, mint, oregano, parsley, rosemary, sage, sweet marjoram, thyme and watercress.
Bulbs: African iris, amaryllis, anemones, bulbine, crinum, day lily, paper white narcissus, ranunculus, society garlic, spider lilies, rain lilies; refrigerate for future planting - Dutch iris, tulips, daffodils and hyacinths.