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The Best Fruits and Vegetables to Grow This Fall

By John Williams

Fall has arrived in many areas of the country but that doesn’t mean that you can’t still get some amazing produce out of your garden. While fall gardening depends on your specific location and climate, there are still plenty of options of fruits or vegetables to grow when it comes to the fall growing season. These delicious fruits and vegetables are a wonderful addition to grow in your fall garden.

Lettuce

As one of the easiest fall vegetables to grow, lettuce is well used in many gardens. It is quick to germinate and can be harvested at any time which makes it easy to use in fresh dishes and salads. Consider planting a few different waves of lettuce about 2 weeks apart which will keep a regular supply of lettuce coming to your dinner table. Many lettuce varieties can also withstand a light frost making them an easy choice for those climates that have a limited amount of warm fall temperatures.

Broccoli

This cool season vegetable grows best in the seasons of spring and fall. Plant broccoli seeds early in the fall when temperatures are getting lower at night and the scorching summer sun is waning. Watch the broccoli carefully and consider covering it if freezing weather will be around overnight. Harvest the broccoli when the heads are small and compact for ultimate flavor.

Radish

As a small root vegetable, radishes are easily grown in the fall due to being underground and protected a bit longer from cooling temperatures. Radishes are a great addition to add to fall salads as well as soups and stews. Harvested radishes that are smaller will have zestier flavor than those allowed to grow larger. Many fall gardeners like growing radish due to their quick growing time as well.

Melons

While you can’t plant melons in the fall, it is the prime time to harvest once the summer heat has faded. Melons are especially popular in the fall as they need a long and hot growing season in order to fully ripen. Check for yellow underbellies of watermelons in order to know that the melon is ripe enough to eat before harvesting. Other melons, like cantaloupe and honeydew, will be ready early in the fall when planted in the summer.

Apples

Another favorite fall fruit is the apple which matures on trees all throughout the country. Most apples will be found primarily in northern gardens where the air is a bit less hot during the summer. If you don’t have your own apple tree or orchard consider picking up an apple tree in the fall to plant for future harvests. Look around your area for apple trees that are ripe but not being used in order to pick apples that would have gone to waste.

Squash

Fall is the prime time for pumpkins and other squash varieties to mature. You’ll find many different uses for pumpkins around the house as well as edible recipes for soups and stews. Butternut squash is a fall favorite as well as ornamental small pumpkins that are used for fall decorating. Zucchini and yellow squash are also fall favorites and are used for many delicious dishes.

Fall is a great time to get out and enjoy working in the garden with abounding cooler temperatures. Consider planting or harvesting all of these fruits and vegetables to grow in the fall this season for amazing food that you cultivated right in your own backyard.

John Williams is an outdoor living expert and explorer. When he’s not traveling to nature’s most well known beauty spots, he tends to the greenery surrounding his home.

 

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5 Extra Storage Spaces You Can Take Advantage Of

storage

By Amanda Sims, originally found on Architectural Digest 

When you’ve been living somewhere day in and day out, it’s sometimes hard to see the place with fresh eyes. Looking for extra storage space is therefore typically a fruitless task—because if it were there, you’d have noticed it, right? But the following five locations are strangely evasive despite being relatively common. Your home probably has one or two of them; you just might not have realized you can stow something there at all. Go forth and maximize your storage options without having to move into a bigger place.

Above the Kitchen Cabinets

Though difficult to know what to do with, that shelf of open space above the kitchen cabinets should be utilized—and not just to stash the party platters you use only once a year. Here are our favorite creative ways to optimize that shelf (think: a big beautiful basket that hides six extra paper towel rolls).

Inside a Windowsill

If you’re lucky enough to have a window with deep casements, you can prop up a floating shelf or two inside that recess. Prop them out with potted plants and ginger jars or go the more utilitarian route: A collection of glassware is a doubly appealing set to display because the light will stream right through it.

Airspace

By screwing a hook into a ceiling joist, you’re halfway to the hanging storage solution of your dreams. (For lighter loads, you can use a butterfly bolt to affix a hook to the drywall ceiling.) Hang bikes, shelves, or even seating—and free up the floor space underneath it.

Behind the Couch

If your couch is up against a wall, bump it out six inches and stash extra folding chairs back there ready for when guests come over. If it’s in the middle of a room, rest a console along the back of it and stash it with extra dishware, linens, or kids’ toys.

Inside the Shower

If you don’t have the luxury of a linen closet but do have a few extra square feet in a standing shower, find a roomy stool and place it as far away from the nozzle as possible—then stack the bench high with the plushest bath towels you can find.

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Home Projects For Summer’s End

Originally posted on News Observer 

Labor Day unofficially marks the end of summer, but there’s still plenty of time to cross projects off your summer to-do list. According to HomeAdvisor data, homeowners commonly start these projects around the beginning of September:

ROOFING REPAIR AND INSTALLATION

Hiring a pro to address roof-related problems like loose shingles, leaks, damaged flashing and bad ventilation will ensure that your home is both warm and secure as colder weather hits. And if your roof is beyond repair, now is a good time to tackle a complete roof replacement.

TREE SERVICE

Dead branches and broken limbs can pose a hazard to your home all year long. But as the temperatures drop and winter storms blow in, they can become a real danger to your family and your property. Getting those trees pruned, trimmed and treated by a pro – before the seasons change – not only eliminates this threat, but it also helps to prevent unsightly debris from piling up in the future. What’s more, it will ensure that backyard elm or weeping willow will be thriving once spring arrives.

MAJOR REMODELS

Home remodels can be a great investment, but they can also be invasive. Starting a major remodel while the weather is still mild will make it easier for your pros to do prep work and store their tools and materials outside and out of your way. And beginning a kitchen renovation before winter hits will allow you to use your grill and outdoor eating space while your indoor space is out of commission.

GUTTER CLEANING

Clogged gutters can cause ice dams, foundational damage and leaky ceilings. Fortunately, removing debris from your gutters is simple – and DIY-able. Lean a ladder against your home and clear away any sticks, leaves and other fragments. You can also use a leaf blower to quickly eliminate gutter gunk. Hire a pro if you notice any damage or don’t have the time to tackle this project. Professionals will keep your gutters in good health and provide quick solutions to potential problems.

LANDSCAPING

September is an ideal time to prep your yard for chillier temperatures. Seeding, trimming perennials and planting bulbs, shrubs and trees can ensure your yard is healthy come spring. It’s also a good idea to pack up furniture that could be affected by cold weather. Plastic and ceramics can become brittle and break in lower temperatures.

NEW WINDOW INSTALLATION

Now is the perfect time to get that window replacement project underway. Replacing drafty, outdated windows with a more energy-efficient alternative will create a cozier, more comfortable home interior come fall. And the money you’ll save on your utility bill will last well beyond the springtime thaw.

DRIVEWAYS

A new driveway is an ideal way to spruce up the outside of your home. And pouring your new driveway while the weather’s warm will allow it to dry before the freeze-thaw cycles of autumn and winter, resulting in a flaw-free surface.

DECKS AND PORCHES

Between foot traffic and sun exposure, your deck can take a beating during the warmer months. This makes the end of summer a prime time to touch up any damage or deterioration. This is also a great time to install a porch or deck. In addition to better working weather, a late-summer installation will allow you to enjoy your new deck or porch during the cool fall weather – just in time for autumn cookouts and football watch parties!

HomeAdvisor is an online marketplace connecting homeowners with trusted service professionals to complete home projects. Visit HomeAdvisor.com.

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