Apply grass seed mix to patches on the lawn.
Continue deadheading annuals and perennials to encourage additional flowers.
During cold days divide spring and summer blooming perennials, water them well after planting.
Bring houseplants indoors before the temperature drops below 50-degrees F. Treat any pests or diseases, rinse them and keep them separate from the house plants that stayed inside during the summer until they are healthy.
As the days get colder and shorter, cut back on the frequency of watering. Plants are getting ready to go dormant and they do not need as much water at this time.
Avoid working on your garden when the soil is too dry or too wet.
Add to your compost pile dead leaves and stems from healthy plants. Avoid putting into your compost infested plant material.
During warm-sunny days, apply broadleaf weed control to your lawn to kill perennial weeds. This will minimize weeding in the spring.
Plant spinach, leaf lettuce and radishes.
Plant garlic. This will allow the bulb to set roots and sprout during the fall, then go dormant in the winter and sprout again in the spring. Harvest bulbs in the summer once the tops turn yellow.
Dig out herbs such as basil, parsley, chives, and rosemary to grow them indoors during the winter. Place them under a growing light or by a window where they get direct sun, and enjoy fresh herbs all winter long!
Check for black spot, apple scab, mildew, etc. and discard infested leaves from trees and shrubs, do not add them to your compost pile.
If you need to transplant trees and shrubs wait until they drop their leaves or undergo color change; at this time they are entering dormancy and will not suffer much stress by moving them to a new site.
*Please note that these tips are specific to the climate and growing conditions of the Chicago land area only.