Whether we enjoy another beautiful Indian Summer or not, there are plenty of jobs to be getting on with in the garden as Autumn heads in to Winter
AS the seasons change and summer moves seamlessly into Autumn (hopefully with a final flurry of sunshine to sustain us through the winter), there are lots of jobs in the garden that demand your attention, whatever the weather. Here, we’ve brought together your Autumn gardening ‘to do’ list.
Plant Autumn onion sets, garlic, and perpetual spinach. Get broad beans and peas in for earlier cropping in the Spring.
Get busy in the greenhouse
Clean off shade paint and clear leaves from the guttering and repair any broken panes before the winter. Tidying up and cleaning out will reduce the risk of overwintering pests and disease.
Clear out last year’s compost and dig it in around the garden to make way for all the green material that clearing up your borders and veg garden will generate. If your compost isn’t quite ready then
turn it to improve decomposition, and create a new heap – you can never have too much compost!
Love me tender
Cut back stems of tender species – Cannas, Dahlias, Begonias, and lift the tubers before the first frosts threaten. Once you have brushed off the soil, the tubers can be stored in dry compost or sand in a cool, frost free place ready for replanting in Spring. In some areas, simply applying a thick mulch will avoid the need for lifting – but only for those in milder climates.
Divide and conquer
Spend some time moving plants around, dividing perennials and generally clearing out your borders. You can cut back perennials to 5cm above ground level, leaving any attractive seed-heads for structure and interest. Dig up and compost annuals, then apply a mulch to the borders.
Love your lawn
Rake out any thatch and moss from your lawn, and improve drainage and aeration to worn areas using a garden fork to make holes every 10 cm or so. It’s a good time to feed your lawn or to lay new turf in areas that really need it.
Keep on top of the leaves
Collect fallen leaves in a cage of wire mesh (or use bin liners with holes punched into the sides) and allow them to rot down into leaf mould. Net your pond before the leaves start to fall in causing problems.
Autumn is a good time to plant evergreens to fill gaps in your borders and add year round interest and structure to your beds.
Lock up your lawnmower
You may be relieved to see the back of the mowing for another year, but before you store your lawnmower, think about having it serviced (or service it yourself) to avoid it seizing up over the Winter.