Cut back perennial herbs to encourage well branched growth next year. A plant or two of parsley taken from the garden will do well in a sunny window. Chives, sage and thyme will also do well.
To save caladium tubers, dig them up late this month. Allow to dry completely and store in vermiculite or similar material.
Prune damaged or diseased branches from shrubs and trees in late fall or early winter. Dispose of debris to minimize disease carryover to spring. Rake regularly and begin compost beds. Clean up around perennials. Dispose of leaves and stems on the ground which can harbor disease or provide hiding places for pests.
Mulch plants to protect roots and conserve moisture.
Plant a cover crop of legumes in used sections of the flower and vegetable garden. In early spring, till under to provide extra nitrogen to new crops.
Fall is the best time for planting trees and shrubs. Nurseries have a good selection now. Consider buying some for the fall color they will provide or for the interest the bark or shape may bring to the winter landscape.
Geneva Thomas, former Smith County Master Gardener
Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service