November Gardening List – Garden Tasks For The Southeast

Plants In Outdoor Planters
(Image credit: bunsview)

November gardening often translates into planting if you’re adding any of a variety of deciduous shrubs and trees. It is planting time for vines, and in some areas for spring blooming bulbs too.

Garden Tasks for the Southeast

Get prepared for Southeast November planting by selecting the right site for your landscape additions. If you think November is too late to plant deciduous trees and shrubs in your area, you may be right, depending upon the temperature of your soil. If the soil is consistently 50°F (10° C) or above, you may plant. When planting evergreen trees, the soil should be 60° F (15.5° C) or above.

These temperatures ensure that your newly planted tree or shrub has time to develop a substantial root system before entering dormancy. Fall is an appropriate time to plant because foliage is not developing and all the energy goes to the roots. 

Light pruning for existing trees is appropriate this month. Take off dead and diseased branches that might fall during winter storms and cause damage. Much overall pruning can be left until late winter. 

Southeast Gardening to do List

  • Mulch and prune fruit bushes and grapes, such as those that grow on canes, bushes and vines. Remove older canes. 
  • Clean up around fruit trees carefully and completely, so as not to leave a winter home for insects.
  • Dig tender bulbs for winter storage, like Elephant Ears and Dahlias when foliage is darkened by frost. Clip foliage. Dry for a couple of weeks then store in a box or bag with peat moss or bark chips at 40-50 degrees.
  • Cut back your mums after frost gets them, then apply two to three inches loose mulch for winter protection. Prune off other frost-damaged perennials. Cut back asparagus to the ground when it sustains this damage. 
  • Take a soil test. Dolomitic limestone, if needed is best applied in early spring.
  • Clean tools before storing them for the winter. Paint thinner can remove resins from blades. Sharpen and oil pruners before storing so they’ll be ready to go when you need them again.
  • Fertilize cool-season grass with nitrogen this month.
  • Prepare beds for early spring plantings like peas, spinach and leaf lettuces. Cover them with shredded leaves, rotted sawdust or manure that will work into the soil over the few months before planting.

Other Chores in Southeast Gardens in November

Continue to rake leaves and mow the lawn as needed. Make sure all houseplants have been fertilized this season and bring them inside if temperatures in your area get cold. 

Some succulent plants are winter growers, going dormant in summer. These include Jades and Kalanchoe. Know which of these are in your houseplant collection and care for them accordingly.

Becca Badgett

Becca Badgett was a regular contributor to Gardening Know How for ten years. Co-author of the book How to Grow an EMERGENCY Garden, Becca specializes in succulent and cactus gardening.