- Mulching or over-wintering your plants. Tender plants can be cut-back,lifted and stored in a dark place over the winter months or covered well and deeply in an quality organic mulch. The decision whether to lift and store or mulch will depend upon the plant and your local climate.
- As the temperatures drop, your warm weather garden crops will begin to fade out. Basil does not care for temperatures much below 50 degrees F, so once your area starts approaching these temperatures it is best to harvest whatever seeds you want for the next season's crops and harvest the leaves to make pestos. Harvest your beans and allow them to die in the garden before removing the plants. As the beans die out, they will put nitrogen back into the soil. In many areas there is still time to get your cooler weather garden crops such as kale, kohlrabi and spinach going.
- Know the plants in the pasture areas where your animals are grazing and browsing. As frosts begin to approach, be aware that a frost can change the chemical composition of many forage plants including Johnson grass, sorghum, sudan, and alfalfa, making them toxic.
- Is your chicken coop prepared for inclement weather? Do you have heat lamps and coop safe heaters at the ready for cold evenings. Do you need tarps or some other cover with fasteners to help secure the coop from cold winds and drafts. If you have windows, are they in good work order so they can be closed sufficiently to eliminate drafts. The more pleasant temperatures make this a good time of year to give the coop a good cleaning.
- If you have goats you are now entering breeding season. Be sure to mark the date of the expected birth date of the kids (150 days later) on the calendar. A feed higher in fiber and lower in protein than the milking ration is in order for the first 3 months of gestation. Check your feed supply and estimate your needs for the winter to ensure you have enough grain and hay as well as bedding on hand. If storage space is a problem, do you have a reliable supply source.
- Seed and reseed pastures.
- If you are entering a wet season and are planning to collect rainwater, check your gutters for debris and leaks. Check down spouts for leaks that can cause erosion and cause you to lose valuable water. Eliminator levels should be checked to determine if draining is required and roof washer.
- If you are using solar in some or all areas of your place, do you have sufficient battery storage or an alternative means of energy. Shorter days and more inclement weather often results in smaller solar systems not having sufficient storage capacity for the increased periods of time.
Approaching the second half of September, the northern hemisphere is preparing for fall and winter, while the southern hemisphere has spring fever setting in. If you are in the northern hemisphere and practicing, of thinking of practicing, some sustainable urban farming practices, here are a few things to consider for preparation:
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