November Homesteading Chores by USDA Zone

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November Homesteading Chores by USDA Zone - The New Homesteader's Almanac

November Homesteading Chores

These July homesteading chores are intended as a general guideline. Most homesteaders will need to adjust their activities according to their local climate and conditions. For information tailored to your area, consult your local extension office.

Find Your Zone… Click on the link to see your average first and last frost dates.

USDA Zone 1

Homesteaders in Zone 1 will have few daylight hours for outdoor activities in late autumn. Winter conditions should be expected.  Livestock will need a draft free barn with plenty of bedding and extra attention to keep them healthy. The extra care and feed necessary for livestock may negate the benefits of keeping them. Chickens, with their small body size and susceptibility to frostbite, won’t survive without proper housing and a heat source. Consider keeping a heavy breed of duck as they have more body fat. Homesteading activities may include raising sprouts and microgreens indoors under lights, repairing and maintaining tools, home cooking, curing meats, crafts, tanning hides, woodworking, butchering extra livestock, trapping, hunting, and splitting firewood.

Average low temperatures:
  • -60 to -55F in zone 1a
  • -55 to -50F in zone 1b

Barn Chores

  • Keep livestock well fed and protected from wind and cold
  • Check for signs of hypothermia and frostbite on livestock
  • Water should be kept ice-free with proper heaters
  • Make sure barn is ventilated (but draft free) to prevent disease
  • Give poultry corn or sunflower seed for extra calories
  • Poultry may lay eggs with 14 hours of artificial light a day in their coop
  • Gather eggs often to prevent freezing
  • Keep bedding clean and dry
  • Assess feed supplies to ensure they will last through winter
  • Butcher or sell excess livestock

Garden Chores

  • Order gardening catalogs
  • Plan garden beds (be sure to rotate crops)
  • Clean and oil tools to prevent rust over winter
  • Grow sprouts, microgreens, herbs, and houseplants under lights indoors
  • Check houseplants for scale and mites, treat if necessary
  • Transplant houseplants to larger pots
  • Houseplants do not need fertilizer until daylight hours increase
  • Check vegetables in the root cellar and use up any with bad spots (or feed to livestock)

evergreens

USDA Zone 2

Homesteaders in Zone 2 will have few daylight hours for outdoor activities in late autumn. Winter conditions are likely. Livestock will need a draft free barn with plenty of bedding and extra attention to keep them healthy. Chickens, with their small body size and susceptibility to frostbite, may not survive well in this zone without supplemental heat. Consider keeping a heavy breed of duck instead, as they have more body fat. Homesteading activities may include raising sprouts and microgreens indoors under lights, repairing and maintaining tools, home cooking, crafts, tanning hides, woodworking, butchering extra livestock, trapping, hunting, ice fishing and splitting firewood.

Average Low Temperatures:
  • -50 to -45F in zone 2a
  • -45 to -30F in zone 2b

Barn Chores

  • Keep livestock well fed and protected from wind and cold
  • Check for signs of hypothermia and frostbite on livestock
  • Water should be kept ice-free with proper heaters
  • Make sure barn is ventilated (but draft free) to prevent disease
  • Give poultry corn or sunflower seed for extra calories
  • Poultry may lay eggs with 14 hours of artificial light a day in their coop
  • Gather eggs often to prevent freezing
  • Keep bedding clean and dry
  • Assess feed supplies to ensure they will last through winter
  • Butcher or sell excess livestock

Garden Chores

  • Order gardening catalogs
  • Plan garden beds (be sure to rotate crops)
  • Protect fruit bearing trees and shrubs from damage from wildlife
  • Clean and oil tools to prevent rust over winter
  • Grow sprouts, microgreens, herbs and houseplants under lights indoors
  • Check houseplants for scale and mites, treat if necessary
  • Transplant houseplants to larger pots
  • Houseplants do not need fertilizer until daylight hours increase
  • Check vegetables in root cellar and use up any with bad spots (or feed to livestock)

firewood

USDA Zone 3

Homesteaders in Zone 3 will have fewer daylight hours for outdoor activities in late autumn. Winter conditions are likely.  Livestock will need a draft free barn with plenty of bedding to keep them healthy. Consider keeping cold tolerant chickens, such as Buckeyes, or a heavy breed of duck, as they are more adapted to cold climates. Homesteading activities may include growing frost tolerant vegetables in cold frames, raising sprouts and microgreens indoors under lights, repairing and maintaining tools, home cooking, crafts, tanning hides, woodworking, butchering extra livestock, fishing, trapping, hunting, and splitting firewood.

Average Low Temperatures:
  • -40 to -35F in zone 3a
  • -35 to -30F in zone 3b

Barn Chores

  • Keep livestock well fed and protected from wind and cold
  • Check for signs of hypothermia and frostbite on livestock
  • Water should be kept ice-free with proper heaters
  • Make sure barn is ventilated (but draft free) to prevent disease
  • Give poultry corn or sunflower seed in the evening to keep them warm
  • Poultry may lay eggs with 14 hours of artificial light a day in their coop
  • Gather eggs often to prevent freezing
  • Keep bedding clean and dry
  • Check fence lines for needed repairs and signs of predators
  • Assess feed supplies to ensure they will last through winter
  • Butcher or sell excess livestock

Garden Chores

  • Order gardening catalogs
  • Plan garden beds (be sure to rotate crops)
  • Harvest the last frost tolerant kale, collards, and Brussels sprouts if you haven’t already done so
  • Finish garden clean up
  • Protect fruit-bearing trees and shrubs from damage from wildlife
  • Clean and oil tools to prevent rust over winter
  • Grow sprouts, microgreens, herbs, and houseplants under lights indoors
  • Check houseplants for scale and mites, treat if necessary
  • Transplant houseplants to larger pots
  • Houseplants do not need fertilizer until daylight hours increase
  • Check vegetables in the root cellar and use or compost any with bad spots
leaves

USDA Zone 4

Homesteaders in Zone 4 will have fewer daylight hours for outdoor activities in late autumn. Winter conditions are possible, especially late in the month.  Small livestock will need a draft free barn with plenty of bedding to keep them warm at night. Allow livestock out on pasture during daytime. Consider keeping cold tolerant chickens, such as Buckeyes, or a heavy breed of duck, as they are more adapted to cold climates. Homesteading activities may include growing cold tolerant vegetables in cold frames, raising sprouts and microgreens indoors under lights, repairing and maintaining tools, home cooking, crafts, tanning hides, woodworking, butchering extra livestock, trapping, fishing, hunting, and splitting firewood.

Average Low Temperatures:
  • -30 to -25F in zone 4a
  • -25 to -20F in zone 4b

Barn Chores

  • Keep livestock well fed and protected from wind and cold
  • Check for signs of hypothermia and frostbite on livestock
  • Water should be kept ice-free with proper heaters
  • Make sure barn is ventilated (but draft free) to prevent disease
  • Give poultry corn or sunflower seed in the evening to keep them warm
  • Poultry may lay eggs with 14 hours of artificial light a day in their coop
  • Gather eggs often to prevent freezing
  • Keep bedding clean and dry
  • Check fence lines for needed repairs and signs of predators
  • Assess feed supplies to ensure they will last through winter
  • Butcher or sell excess livestock

Garden Chores

  • Order gardening catalogs
  • Plan garden beds (be sure to rotate crops)
  • Harvest cold hardy greens such as kale, Brussels sprouts, and collards
  • Grow cold hardy greens in cold frames for later harvests
  • Finish harvesting root vegetables and store in root cellar
  • Finish garden clean up
  • Protect fruit bearing trees and shrubs from damage from wildlife
  • Clean and oil tools to prevent rust over winter
  • Make sure hoses are disconnected and stored indoors
  • Grow sprouts, microgreens, herbs and houseplants under lights indoors
  • Check houseplants for scale and mites, treat if necessary
  • Transplant houseplants to larger pots
  • Houseplants do not need fertilizer until daylight hours increase
  • Check vegetables in root cellar and use up any with bad spots (or feed to livestock)

autumn apples

USDA Zone 5

Homesteaders in Zone 5 will have fewer daylight hours for outdoor activities in late autumn. Winter conditions are possible late in the month.  Small livestock will need a draft free barn with plenty of bedding to keep them warm at night. Allow livestock out on pasture during daytime. Consider keeping cold tolerant chickens, such as Buckeyes, or a heavy breed of duck, as they are more adapted to cold climates. Homesteading activities may include growing cold hardy vegetables in cold frames, raising sprouts and microgreens indoors under lights, repairing and maintaining tools, home cooking, crafts, tanning hides, woodworking, butchering extra livestock, fishing, trapping, hunting, splitting firewood, and yard and garden clean up.

Average Low Temperatures:
  • -20 to -15F in zone 5a
  • -15 to -10F in zone 5b

Barn Chores

  • Keep livestock well fed and protected from wind and cold at night
  • Check for signs of frostbite on chicken combs, wattles, and feet
  • Water should be kept ice-free with proper heaters
  • Make sure barn is ventilated (but draft free) to prevent disease
  • Give poultry corn or sunflower seed in the evening to keep them warm
  • Poultry may lay eggs with 14 hours of artificial light a day in their coop
  • Gather eggs often to prevent freezing
  • Keep bedding clean and dry
  • Check fence lines for needed repairs and signs of predators
  • Assess feed supplies to ensure they will last through winter
  • Butcher or sell excess livestock

Garden Chores

  • Order gardening catalogs
  • Plan garden beds (be sure to rotate crops)
  • Harvest cold hardy greens such as kale, Brussels sprouts, and collards
  • Grow cold hardy greens in cold frames to extend the season
  • Finish garden clean up
  • Finish harvesting root vegetables and store in the root cellar
  • Protect fruit-bearing trees and shrubs from damage from wildlife
  • Clean and oil tools to prevent rust over winter
  • Finish planting dormant trees, shrubs, and perennials
  • Make sure hoses are disconnected and stored indoors
  • Grow sprouts, microgreens, herbs, and houseplants under lights indoors
  • Check houseplants for scale and mites, treat if necessary
  • Transplant houseplants to larger pots
  • Houseplants do not need fertilizer until daylight hours increase

wheelbarrow

USDA Zone 6

Homesteaders in Zone 6 will have fewer daylight hours for outdoor activities in late autumn. Winter conditions are possible late in the month.  Small livestock will need a draft free barn and clean bedding to keep them warm at night. Allow livestock out on pasture during daytime. Clean barn and chicken coop in preparation for winter. Homesteading activities may include growing cold hardy vegetables in cold frames, raising sprouts and microgreens indoors under lights, repairing and maintaining tools, home cooking, crafts, tanning hides, woodworking, butchering extra livestock, fishing, hunting, splitting firewood, and yard and garden clean up.

Average Low Temperatures:
  • -10 to -5F in zone 6a
  • -55 to 0F in zone 6b

Barn Chores

  • Protect livestock from wind and cold
  • Water should be kept ice-free with proper heaters
  • Make sure barn is ventilated (but draft free) to prevent disease
  • Give poultry corn or sunflower seed in the evening to keep them warm
  • Poultry may lay eggs with 14 hours of artificial light a day in their coop
  • Gather eggs often when temperatures drop
  • Keep bedding clean and dry
  • Check fence lines for needed repairs and signs of predators
  • Assess feed supplies to ensure they will last through winter
  • Butcher or sell excess livestock

Garden Chores

  • Order gardening catalogs
  • Plan garden beds (be sure to rotate crops)
  • Tend and harvest cold hardy greens such as kale, Brussels sprouts, and collards
  • Grow cold hardy greens in cold frames to extend the season
  • Harvest root vegetables and store in the root cellar
  • Clean garden beds and prepare soil for spring
  • Plant dormant fruit trees, shrubs, and hardy perennials
  • Protect fruit-bearing trees and shrubs from damage from wildlife
  • Clean and oil tools to prevent rust over winter
  • Make sure hoses are disconnected and stored indoors
  • Grow sprouts, microgreens, herbs, and houseplants under lights indoors
  • Check houseplants for scale and mites, treat if necessary
  • Transplant houseplants to larger pots
  • Houseplants do not need fertilizer until daylight hours increase

beets

USDA Zone 7

Homesteaders in Zone 7 will have fewer daylight hours in late autumn. Inclement weather conditions are possible.  Small livestock will need a draft free barn at night. Allow livestock out on pasture during day. Clean out barn and chicken coop in preparation for winter.  Homesteading activities may include harvesting and preserving fall produce, growing cold hardy vegetables in cold frames, raising sprouts and microgreens indoors under lights, repairing and maintaining tools, home cooking, crafts, tanning hides, woodworking, butchering extra livestock, fishing, hunting, splitting firewood, and yard and garden clean up.

Average Low Temperatures:
  • 0 to 5F in zone 7a
  • 5 to 10F in zone 7b

Barn Chores

  • Make sure barn is ventilated
  • Poultry may lay eggs with 14 hours of artificial light a day in their coop
  • Keep bedding clean and dry
  • Check fencing for needed repairs and signs of predators
  • Finish putting hay, straw, and grain up for winter, if you haven’t done so already
  • Grow kale, collards and other cool season crops for livestock fodder
  • Butcher or sell excess livestock

Garden Chores

  • Order gardening catalogs
  • Plan garden beds (be sure to rotate crops)
  • Tend and harvest cold hardy greens such as kale, Brussels sprouts, and collards
  • Grow cold hardy greens in cold frame to extend the season
  • Dig root vegetables and store in the root cellar
  • Clean garden beds and prepare soil for spring
  • Plant dormant fruit trees, shrubs, and hardy perennials
  • Plant evergreens and water until ground freezes
  • Divide and transplant hardy perennials
  • Bring potted plants indoors, if you haven’t already done so
  • Protect fruit-bearing trees and shrubs from damage from wildlife
  • Clean and oil tools to prevent rust over winter
  • Grow sprouts, microgreens, herbs, and houseplants under lights indoors
  • Check houseplants for scale and mites, treat if necessary
  • Transplant houseplants to larger pots
  • Houseplants do not need fertilizer until daylight hours increase
kale

USDA Zone 8

Homesteaders in Zone 8 will have reduced daylight hours in late autumn. Inclement weather conditions are possible.  Allow livestock out on pasture. Clean out barn and chicken coop in preparation for winter.  Homesteading activities may include growing cold hardy vegetables, harvesting and preserving fall produce, raising sprouts and microgreens indoors under lights, repairing and maintaining tools, home cooking, crafts, tanning hides, woodworking, butchering extra livestock, fishing, hunting, splitting firewood, yard and garden clean up.

Average Low Temperatures:
  • 10 to 15F in zone 8a
  • 15 to 20F in zone 8b

Barn Chores

  • Pasture livestock in good weather
  • Make sure barn is ventilated
  • Give poultry corn or sunflower seed if weather is cold
  • Poultry may lay eggs with 14 hours of artificial light a day in their coop
  • Keep bedding clean and dry
  • Repair fencing and check for signs of predators
  • Finish putting hay, straw, and grain up for winter, if you haven’t done so already
  • Grow kale, collards and other cool season crops for livestock fodder
  • Butcher or sell excess livestock

Garden Chores

  • Harvest warm season vegetables and preserve for winter
  • Clean garden beds and prepare for spring
  • Direct seed cool-season vegetables in cold frames
  • Use cold frames or floating row covers to protect warm season vegetables
  • Dig root vegetables and store in the root cellar
  • Bring cold sensitive container plants indoors
  • Clean, sharpen, and oil gardening tools
  • Plant dormant fruit trees, shrubs, and hardy perennials
  • Plant evergreens
  • Divide and transplant hardy perennials
  • Grow herbs and houseplants in sunny windows

potted herbs

USDA Zone 9

Homesteaders in zone 9 will have reduced daylight hours. Cold weather is possible. Warm season vegetables may be grown with protection from cold weather. Planting cool weather vegetables will provide greens over winter. Livestock may need protection in inclement weather. Homesteading activities may include harvesting and preserving, foraging for wild foods, fishing, hunting, gardening, tending citrus trees, yard and garden clean up.

Average Low Temperatures:
  • 20 to 25F in zone 9a
  • 25 to 30F in zone 9b

Barn Chores

  • Pasture livestock, protect from inclement weather
  • Make sure barn is ventilated
  • Give poultry small amounts of corn or sunflower seed in the evening only if weather is cold
  • Poultry may lay eggs with 14 hours of light a day
  • Gather eggs often if temperatures drop
  • Keep bedding clean and dry
  • Repair fencing and check for signs of predators
  • Finish putting hay, straw, and grain in for the season
  • Grow kale, collards and other cool season crops for livestock fodder
  • Butcher or sell excess livestock

Garden Chores

  • Prepare garden beds and direct seed successive crops of cool season veggies
  • Protect warm season vegetables when temperatures drop
  • Harvest and preserve vegetables
  • Plant fruit trees, shrubs, and hardy perennials
  • Divide perennials
  • Water citrus trees during dry spells, protect from frost
  • Clean, sharpen, and oil gardening tools
  • Bring tender potted plants indoors when temps drop
  • Harvest root vegetables for fresh use

green tomatoes

USDA Zone 10

Homesteaders living in zone 10 may grow cool season crops all winter for fresh greens. Warm season crops continue to produce flowers and fruits for harvest. Some citrus fruits may be ready to harvest. Watch for signs of pests and disease on crops. Homesteading activities may include harvesting and preserving produce, foraging for wild foods, fishing, hunting, gardening, yard and garden clean up.

Average Low Temperatures:
  • 30 to 35F in zone 10a
  • 35 to 40F in zone 10b

Barn Chores

  • Pasture livestock
  • Make sure barn is ventilated
  • Keep bedding clean and dry
  • Repair fencing and check for signs of predators
  • Grow kale, collards and other cool season crops for livestock fodder
  • Finish off livestock for butchering in cooler weather

Garden Chores

  • Prepare garden beds and plant successive crops of cool season vegetables
  • Harvest warm season crops
  • Clean up beds as warm season crops finish for the season
  • Water citrus in drought
  • Harvest citrus fruits when ripe
  • Plant cover crops
  • Clean and sharpen gardening tools
  • Grow herbs and houseplants on sunny decks
  • Cut back on fertilizer for houseplants
  • Harvest root vegetables for fresh use
lemons

USDA Zone 11

Homesteaders in zone 11 are able to grow heat loving tropical plants year round. Cool season crops may be harvested and direct seeded in areas that remain cool, such as in shady beds. Some citrus fruits may be ready to harvest. Plant trees, shrubs and perennials, divide plants and keep watered.  Homesteading activities may include harvesting and preserving produce, foraging for wild foods, fishing, hunting, gardening, yard and garden clean up.

Average Low Temperatures:
  • 40 to 45F for zone 11a
  • 45 to 50F for zone 11b

Barn Chores

  • Pasture livestock
  • Make sure barn is ventilated
  • Keep bedding clean and dry
  • Repair fencing and check for signs of predators
  • Plant cover crops
  • Grow kale, collards and other cool season crops for livestock fodder
  • Finish off livestock for butcher during coolest months

Garden Chores

  • Prepare garden beds and plant successive crops of cool season vegetables
  • Tend and harvest warm season vegetables
  • Plant trees, shrubs, and perennials
  • Divide and transplant perennials
  • Water citrus fruit during drought
  • Weed garden beds
  • Grow herbs and houseplants on patios
  • Harvest citrus fruits

Notes: Within each USDA Zone, there are many different micro-climates and variations in frost free dates, average low temperatures, and average high temperatures. Visit the Interactive USDA Zone Map for the most accurate information about your local conditions.

The information listed here is intended to give a general guideline to appropriate homesteading activities for your area. Each individual using these guidelines must determine if the information is accurate for their conditions.

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Lisa Lombardo

Freelance Writer & Blogger at Tohoca, LLC
Lisa writes in-depth articles about gardening and homesteading topics. She grew up on a farm and has continued learning about horticulture, animal husbandry, and home food preservation ever since. She has earned an Associate of Applied Science in Horticulture and a Bachelor of Fine Arts. She is a self proclaimed gardening freak and crazy chicken lady.

In addition to writing for her own websites, Lisa has contributed articles to The Prepper Project and Homestead.org.

The author lives outside of Chicago with her husband, son, 2 dogs, 1 cat, and a variety of poultry.
Lisa Lombardo
Follow me...

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About Lisa Lombardo

Lisa writes in-depth articles about gardening and homesteading topics. She grew up on a farm and has continued learning about horticulture, animal husbandry, and home food preservation ever since. She has earned an Associate of Applied Science in Horticulture and a Bachelor of Fine Arts. She is a self proclaimed gardening freak and crazy chicken lady. In addition to writing for her own websites, Lisa has contributed articles to The Prepper Project and Homestead.org. The author lives outside of Chicago with her husband, son, 2 dogs, 1 cat, and a variety of poultry.

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