Regional Gardening Guide - Zone 7-8

September 1 to September 30 - 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:

September is the last of summer for most of us with the first frost arriving in the coolest part of zone 7 by the end of September. Those of us in balmy zone 8b have most of October to enjoy before things even start to cool down.  So, it is still a little too warm to plant bulbs but the temperatures do moderate giving some pleasant days to do some gardening.


map for zone 5-6

Your Regional reporter

Kate Cospey regional reporter photo

Kate is an avid veggie gardener and writer.
She is a board member of the Garden Writer's Association. She authored 2 books: The Downsized Veggie Garden (Feb 2016) and New York & New Jersey Month by Month Gardening (Aug 2016).

To see What's in Kate's Garden Click Here!

1.) Fall Flowers

1. Much of zone 7 and 8 can grow fall flowers and edibles for another month or two, even if there is a frost. Kales and pansies tolerate light frosts just fine and fast growing kales can be started from seed as well.

2.) Pansies from seed

2. Plants enjoy the cooler fall weather and some great selections can be grown from seed. Pansies take about 12 weeks so need to be started very soon while the ornamental kales takes closer to 8 weeks. Find great selections for both plants and seeds for a colorful fall garden.

  • Pansy, Moulin Rouge, , large
  • Ornamental Kale, Crane Pink Hybrid, , large
  • Ornamental Kale, Feather King Hybrid, , large

3.) Fall crops to start

3. Just like the ornamental kales, edible kales can be still be started for fall harvest and in mild winter areas, they may well survive into the new year! Brussel sprouts are traditionally planted for fall and are said to taste better after the first hard frost. Lettuce comes in great fall colors as well as green and makes for great fall containers too!

4.) Lettuce Enjoys Cooler Fall Weather

4. Lettuce comes in a variety of colors including some that reflect the fall colors in trees. These are perfect for adding to fall ornamental containers too!

  • Lettuce, Four Seasons, , large
  • Lettuce, Yugoslavian Red, , large
  • Lettuce, Red Salad Bowl, , large

5.) Fall Fertilizers

5.  If you are using the same garden space to change from summer vegetables to fall crops, it is a good idea to add some fertilizer to the garden so that you replenish some of the nutrients.