Regional Gardening Guide - Zone 5-6

October 1 to October 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:

After a long, hot summer, most gardeners welcome the shorter, cooler days of fall. Though there is still quite a bit to do, it doesn’t seem quite so pressing to get it all done at once.


map for zone 5-6

Your Regional reporter

Carol Michel regional reporter photo

Carol Michel is a lifelong gardener and resident of Indiana with a Bachelor’s degree in Horticulture Production from Purdue University.
She regularly writes gardening related topics for Indiana Gardening and on her award-winning garden blog, She is the author of the recently released book Potted & Pruned: Living a Gardening Life.

To See what's in Carol's Garden Click Here!

1.) Harvest vegetables before first frost.

1. Harvest frost sensitive vegetables, including tomatoes, before frost threatens. There are several good ways to use green tomatoes and even ripen them indoors.


2.) Plant spring flowering bulbs like tulips and daffodils.

2. Once the fall chill is in the air and the ground has cooled, we can start planting bulbs for spring flowers. One of the best flowers for spring color is the daffodil. Plant early, mid-season and late blooming daffodils to extend their bloom throughout the spring.

  • Daffodil, Marieke , , large
  • Daffodils 100 Days, , large
  • Daffodils, Mixed, , large

3.) Prepare new planting beds in the fall.

3. Get a jump on next year’s garden by preparing garden beds in the fall. Use your own compost to add organic matter or start a compost pile if you don’t have already have one.

4.) Pot up amaryllis bulbs.

4. Purchase and pot up amaryllis bulbs to enjoy indoor blooms. By staggering their planting, you can enjoy amaryllis blooms over several months.

  • Amaryllis, Grand Diva, , large
  • Amaryllis, Hercules, , large
  • Amaryllis, Rosalie, , large

5.) Keep watering newly planted trees and shrubs.

5. Keep watering newly planted trees and shrubs in the fall until the ground freezes to help them survive the winter, especially if you don’t get much rain. Having good watering tools makes watering less of a chore.

  • Gatorhyde Coiled Garden Hose, , large
  • Ergonomic 7 Pattern Hand Sprayer, , large
  • Galcon 9001D Hose End LCD Timer, , large