Guest blog by Debbie Davies.
Autumn is probably my favourite season, I mean the blue sky, autumn leaves, woolly jumpers kind of autumn, not the dank, rainy days and dark evenings. There is a feeling of things slowing down, an appreciation of the beauty still to be found in the garden but without the pressure to do very much.
Last week I had a therapeutic session clearing out the greenhouse, I had grown tomatoes and chillies in there over the summer (although the tomatoes had been woeful) and it was time to clear the decks. Some of the chillies were brought inside onto the kitchen windowsill to hopefully keep going throughout the winter, but all the tomato plants were taken out and composted. I gave the greenhouse a good sweeping out, disturbing a fair few spiders in the process and moved some of my tender plants from the patio into the greenhouse to protect them from the colder weather that must surely be just round the corner. Here are some tasks you can be doing in the garden now;
- Planting spring bulbs whether in containers or in the ground. Tulips can wait to be planted, November or even early December will be fine for them but bulbs such as Narcissi, Anemones and Hyacinths should be planted now.
- Rake up fallen leaves, if collected together and left to rot down for about a year they will produce leaf mould which can be used as a great soil conditioner.
- Improve your soil for next year by adding a thick layer of organic matter such as home-made compost or well-d manure.
- Harvest any apples, pears or other orchard fruits and store them in a cool, well-ventilated but frost-free place.
Then after all that hard work you can retire to the wood-burner and enjoy your harvest with a big slice of homemade apple cake – Happy Autumn!