Mary Louise Hagler is still harvesting her summer crops, but she's already looking ahead to her fall garden.
"I've been gardening most of my adult life," said Hagler, whose father always had something growing in the garden. "I like to grow things from seed. It's what I like most."
Hagler said she already has planted purple knight and red noodle bean seeds.
"I'm trying to experiment with different varieties," she said of this fall's plantings. "I like to do something that I know will grow."
The master gardener said she'll put out more okra seeds, plant lettuce and will transplant additional tomatoes to grow through the fall.
"We have had an odd season this year to me," she said. "It's been a different weather pattern. I feel like we will have a longer growing season because of the unusual weather pattern."
Hagler said she uses the University of Georgia Cooperative Extension Service's monthly garden calendar to keep her on task.
"It's my gardening bible," she said. "Anybody interested in gardening should definitely use that calendar."
On Hagler's blog -- www.mlchgarden.blogspot.com -- she notes that the UGA planting chart indicates that now is the time to plant fall gardens.
"Just in case you are kicking yourself when all your friends have veggie gardens, but not you, it is time for some fall planting," she recently wrote .
Preparing for fall planting requires just a few thoughts -- what to plant, where to plant and how much to plant.
"The best thing to do is not be scared of it," said Hagler. "Figure out what you like to eat or like to look at and do it. That's three-quarters of it."
In addition to vegetable planting, Hagler said the fall is a great time to plant herbs. Many of her home-grown herbs -- rosemary, oregano, fennel, bay and parsley -- are grown year-round.
"Herbs are a perfect thing to plant, particularly if you don't have much confidence with planting things," she said. "They are perfect for the fall."
Hagler is just as enthusiastic about her fall garden as she has been about her summer crops.
"The fall is just a perfect time to plant."
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