Its fall time and there's plenty of things to do to get ready for next years garden. Never gardened before? Follow me and do what I do. I will post the activities I do as close to the time I do them so you can garden with me. My gardening system is based off of ruth stout's ideas. It requires very little weeding and no watering.
Before we go on let's look at the picture above. All those pumpkins that you like have viable seed. Just pull the seed out, dry it, then put it in an envelope. The seeds are also really tasty from all varietys of squash. I make a batch of salt water to taste, put it in a pot, and boil the seeds in it for about a minute. Then I streign the seeds out add oil and maybe some more salt, and bake in oven 350 till light brown. I suggest stirring them once or so too.
So what did I do? I put 6-8 inches of straw on top of my grass lawn in the fall. It composted with the grass and left clean black dirt below. Just put enough straw down so you cant see the grass. Above I did have some chicken litter so that's the darker half. But the lighter half is just straw and that works too. You can use autumn leaves too, however oak does not decompose fast enough. I also suggest adding bone meal to a leaf mixture and perhaps some lime while your at it to adjust the ph of your soil (at least round these parts in illinois it's good for it).
So that's all I've got for now. But you should definitly do some of this stuff so your garden will be awsome!