Readjust your sprinkler system for October water needs. The Medford Water Commission recommends a half-inch of water per week during October. Turn off your automatic system when the winter rains arrive.
The Master Gardener plant clinic moves to winter hours beginning Oct. 1: Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Call 776-7371 or bring your problems to them at 569 Hanley Rd. in Central Point.
Harvest winter squash when the stems begin to brown and wither. They can be held in the garden until frost.
The flavor of some vegetables, like Brussels sprouts and kale, improves after frost. Mulch with clean straw any vegetables you leave in the garden, including artichokes, as the weather gets cold.
Clean up dropped fruit under trees. Remove and discard any leaves from diseased plants. Other plant material can be composted.
Bulb selection best at local venues, but wait to plant until winter rains begin. This is great weather for planting trees, ornamental shrubs and most perennials.
To minimize algae problems next year, remove fallen leaves from ponds weekly. Use a net to scoop leaves out or place netting over the pond during the period of intense leaf fall.
Test the pH of your lawn if you havenít done so in the last 3 to 5 years. Healthy grass grows within a pH range of 6.0 to 7.5. Add agricultural lime this month if the pH of your soil is below 6.0.
Feed your lawn with a balanced fertilizer. Organic fertilizers release over a longer time period. Seed thin areas by adding a thin layer of compost, raking it in and sprinkling with seed. Keep moist and protect this area.
Learn more about permaculture at North Mountain Park Nature Center. Fall is a great time to plan and plant a garden design that will be beautiful and sustainable. Held 7 to 9 p.m., Oct. 1 at the center, N. Mountain Ave, Ashland. Fee $7. Register online at http://ashlandparks.recware.com
Care about our local environment? Donít miss the Oct. 4, Bear Creek Salmon Festival at North Mountain Park, 620 N Mountain Ave, Ashland. This yearís event takes a historical look at our relationship with the iconic fish. Learn ways to help protect and enhance habitat Ė including the conservation of water and energy, eating sustainable salmon, planting native plants, cleaning-up streams, and stopping storm drain pollution. For information call the nature center at 541.488.6606, or log on to www.BearCreekSalmonFestival.org
Interested in building a green home or considering a solar retrofit? At 10 a.m., Saturday, Oct. 4, the Greater Applegate Community Development Corporation (GACDC), EarthAdvantage and Energy Star will bring a solar tour to the Applegate Valley, featuring four sites between Ruch and Slagle Creek. The last stop is Wooldridge Winery, where green construction contractors, solar installers will be available, along with music, wine, and food. Tickets are $10. For more information and to register go to www.earthadvantage.com
Learn about carnivorous plants for the home and garden. Wednesday, Oct. 15, from Floyd Williams, a local grower and a member of the Rogue Valley Growers Market. He will explain the care and culture of temperate climate carnivorous plants that can also grow in our climate. In addition, he will discuss carnivorous house plants.