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Mountain checklist.

PLANTING

* HERBS IN THE HOUSE. Many herbs grow well indoors if they get five hours or more of bright light daily. In a sunny window, try oregano, rosemary, sage, sweet marjoram, and thyme. In a window with less light, try bay, chives, peppermint, and spearmint. Nurseries and some supermarkets sell herb plants in 2- or 4-inch pots; transplant these immediately into 6-inch or larger pots filled with well-drained potting soil. Allow the soil to dry slightly between waterings.

* SPRING-BLOOMING BULBS. Buy all kinds of spring-flowering bulbs and plant immediately.

* WILDFLOWERS. Sow spring-flowering kinds in weeded, prepared beds. Also sow a small amount of the same seed in a fiat of sterile soil so you'll have a reference plot. Otherwise you won't know weeds from flower seedlings when they emerge next spring.

MAINTENANCE

* DIG AND STORE DAHLIAS. Stop watering a few days before digging dahlias, then carefully unearth them with a spading fork, Discard tops, brush dirt off tubers, and let them cure for a few days in a dry, frost-free place. Place tubers in boxes of peat, vermiculite, or sand and store at 45 [degrees].

* GROOM LAWNS. Mow and edge lawns one last time. Rake leaves off before they mat up and smother the grass.

* MAINTAIN TOOLS. Put an edge on all your tools, from hoes and spades to pruning shears, then wipe metal parts with machine oil and wood handles with linseed oil. Store in a dry place for the winter.

* MULCH. Spread a 3-inch layer of organic mulch around half-hardy plants, over bulb beds, and under trees and shrubs.

* PLAN NEXT YEAR'S GARDEN. While the layout of last summer's flower and vegetable beds is still fresh in your mind, draw up plans for next year's garden. To reduce the risk of soil-borne diseases, rotate your vegetable crops. For example, if you grew cabbage in a bed last summer, next year in that bed plant a completely different crop, such as tomatoes.

* PROTECT ROSES. After cutting back about half the canes, mound dry leaves over roses to insulate them (use screening to keep the leaves from blowing away).

* PRUNE TREES AND SHRUBS. After leaves fall from deciduous trees, start pruning ornamental varieties, but wait until spring to do stone fruits. Work on a mild day, removing dead, injured, and crossing or closely parallel branches. Then prune for shape.
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Copyright 1998 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:includes related article on composting; planting and maintenance activities in November
Publication:Sunset
Date:Nov 1, 1998
Words:389
Previous Article:4-minute bouquets.
Next Article:The gods walk here.
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