My drive into the office this morning was different. Same route, same car, same tunes but something had changed. Something that I might have subconsciously noticed because of the date – autumn has arrived. Okay, that might be a bit dramatic, but I couldn’t help but feel slightly pessimistic at the brown leaves on the pavement and mention of September on Radio 2. Anyway, it got me thinking of the preparation necessary for the inevitable cold months ahead. I know what you’re thinking, stop banging on about winter just because you’ve turned the page on the calendar, but it’s important, especially to us gardeners.
Autumn is a time for preparation – if you fail to prepare for winter, you’ll create yourself twice as much work next year. Here’s a list of jobs you need to get done before the frost comes in –
- Make sure your tender plants are under cover
- Pick tomatoes
- Feed soil
- Plant or move evergreens and conifers
- Plant spring bedding and bulbs
There is also some myth that the planting season is over; which simply isn’t true. September can be an excellent time for planting – whether in preparation for the next season or even to harvest before winter. These plants are still worth a go –
- Broad beans and peas – these plants will establish themselves over winter which means they will flower and fruit early and increase your yield. It may be necessary to fleece them, depending on how cold the winter is.
- Garlic – garlic is one of those rare plants that can be planted anytime during the winter.
- Leafy vegetables – many vegetables with lots of large leaves can be planted and harvested during autumn.
Watch this space for more tips on autumn and winter gardening. All is not lost!
Image by joiseyshowaa