Regional Gardening Guide - Zone 3-4

September 1 to September 31-- Discover what you should be doing right now. Our experts share gardening advice, techniques, news, and ideas to make your garden the best ever.

Here’s what’s happening in your gardening region:

When September rolls around, gardeners in Zone 3 and 4 gardens know that gardening season is winding down. Signs of fall are fast approaching. Golden rod, sunflowers and black-eyed Susans have been turning meadows into gilded marvels. Trees are starting to put on a colorful coat. Ornamental gardens are starting to look ragged and vegetable gardens are yielding their late season crops. Gardeners are changing gears, breathing in the fresh fall air and delighting in the new season.


map for zone 3-4

Your Regional reporter

Lisa Colburn regional reporter photo

Lisa Colburn is a crazy gardener, great cook and author of The Maine Garden Journal.

To see what Lisa's doing in her garden. Click Here!


1. Harvest time is extremely rewarding

Harvest time is extremely rewarding especially when you know you can reap the rewards of your labor well into winter. It’s time to harvest fall-maturing, long-season crops like winter squashes, onions and potatoes. You can have the pleasure of eating vegetables from your own garden even when the snow flies.

2. Fall gardens need not be a drab

Fall gardens need not be drab. There is still a lot of time to enjoy flowers with these cold-tolerant, reliable plants. Add a splash of color to your ornamental gardens with these fall-planted flowers that can withstand cool days and light frosts.

  • Flowering Kale, Song Bird Pink, , large
  • Pansy, Ruby Mix, , large
  • Garden Mum, Mammoth Daisy Coral, , large

3. September is the perfect time to compost

September is the perfect time to compost, plant cover crops and be prepared for cooler days ahead. What can I do in the garden in September? Consider the mottos “Be Prepared” and “Think Ahead” – Do something today that your garden will thank you for.

4. Create compost for your soil

Creating compost is rewarding and worth the effort when you see the difference it can make with your soil. Make compost effortlessly with the right tools and supplies. Turn yard waste and kitchen scraps into one of the best soil amendments available.

  • Leaf Eater Mulcher/Shredder LE-900, , large
  • Kitchen Compost Pail, , large
  • Aerobin 400 Insulated Composter, , large

5. Plant members of the onion family now

Some members of the onion family should be planted by the end of September. It’s time to plant edible and ornamental members of the onion family.

  • Garlic, Transylvania, , large
  • Shallots, French Red, , large
  • Bunching Onion, Evergreen Long White , , large