After a beautiful summer, we now begin to see the lovely colours of autumn as the leaves start to change and fall.
The nights are definitely drawing in, so it is time to start to tackle those autumnal gardens to make sure everything looks wonderful for next year.
Here are CJ Gardens' top jobs for the season:
• Get a wire rake and go through your lawn, raking out dead grass caused by the hot sun.
• Use an autumn fertiliser to give your lawn a boost.
• Clear falling leaves from your lawns as quickly as possible, because if left they can damage grass.
• Prune shrubs and bushes. Once the leaves are off, you can see the shapes of the branches; work with the natural shape of the shrub. Make sure that you leave some lush hedges or trees for birds to nest in – don’t strip everything back at once.
• Wash and tidy away pots. Soak them in a bucket with a mild solution of bleach to prevent any cross-infection. Terracotta pots may absorb the bleach, however.
• Plant for next year:
- The best time to plant roses, shrubs and trees is between October and April.
- Plants will need less watering if planted in autumn. Plant winter bedding as this allows autumn to settle in before winter.
- Buy bulbs in the sales and plant them late. We've had success with tulips planted in December and daffs in January – it does depend on the weather though.
• Make up a cheerful hanging basket or pot for the front door using a miniature conifer, decorative ivy and a cyclamen.
• Do not prune your azaleas, camellias or rhododendrons; the buds for next spring will already have started forming so if you take your hedge cutter to these shrubs you will not have that glorious colour next year.
• Any delicate shrubs in pots may need frost protection, as plants and shrubs finish it's best to group those together that need protecting. Sometimes it can be difficult to remember what’s in the pot when it is not in leaf or flowering though!