Here are some of the things I like to do at this time of year:
1. Mulch overwintering root crops, such as carrots or parsnips with clean straw. The bales you used for your Halloween decorations are perfect for this use.
2. If moles and mice are prevalent, place your tulip bulbs in wire “cages” as you plant them.
3. Get a head start on spring weeding by clearing as many weeds as possible from your beds now.
4. Mulch your bramble fruits as they go dormant. (I’ll also be giving winter protection to my new ‘Chicago Hardy’ fig.)
5. Keep watering perennials and newly planted shrubs and trees until the ground freezes.
6. Take soil samples for testing before the ground freezes--usually by mid-November. (Especially from areas where crops didn’t do well.)
7. Mulch trees, shrubs, roses, and perennials once the ground has frozen.
8. Begin winter pruning only when trees are thoroughly dormant.
I found nice comprehensive lists of November and December monthly garden chores at: http://awaytogarden.com. If you have any other seasonal tips you’d like to share, let us know.