Meet Mark Cullen

Canada's best known gardening personality, Mark Cullen believes that Canadians of all ages need to play more - preferably in the dirt. A best-selling author with over 400,000 books in print, Mark reaches over one million Canadians every week through various media outlets. He is Home Hardware's horticultural spokesperson and regularly contributes to various magazines, gardening shows and newsletters. With a familiar style that people can relate to, he delivers a message that is compelling, fun, informative and inspirational - all based on his organic approach to gardening. In his spare time Mark enjoys driving his Ford Model A - and of course he loves to garden.

Your Fall To-Do List (Part 2)

~ October 19, 2011

The deadline that we have before us today is winter. We can go south to escape the cold and wind but your garden does not have that option.

It is with this in mind that I continue my comprehensive to-do list from last week’s blog.


• Pull up your remaining tomato plants and hang them in the cellar or the garage while the green fruit ripens. They do not need light to do this.
• Harvest leaf lettuce, mesclun and the like.
• Remove the spent bean and tomato plants, etc. and put in your compost.

Compost and Leaves

• Put spent annual plants in your composter or compost pile in layers with fallen leaves (shredded with your lawn mower). Alternate 1 part green stuff with 3 parts leaves.

• Steal leaves from your neighbours who have put their leaves out for recycling pick up, neatly pressed into paper bags for you to take home and compost. Free fertilizer.


I think I mentioned this last week but it is definitely worth repeating.

• Fertilize your lawn – this is the most important application of the year. The nutrition that your lawn receives this time of year will not produce a great looking lawn this fall, but it will strengthen the grass roots and prepare the plants for a fast green up come spring. The results are less snow mould and a stronger, green lawn after the spring melt. Look for a slow release nitrogen product, like Golfgreen fall formula, for best results.

Plant Colour!

Remember that there are plants that will survive and even thrive in cold weather. Belgium Mums, New England Asters, Sedum Spectabile and ornamental grasses all look great this time of year. Don’t forget flowering cabbage and kale: they improve their looks with frost!

Pumpkins, ornamental grasses, corn stalks, hay bales and goose necked squash can all play a part in an entrance display at the front of your home. Be creative and have fun.