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October garden advice and maintenance


General gardening

  • Clear up fallen Autumn leaves regularly
  • Cut back perennials that have died down
  • Divide herbaceous perennials and rhubarb crowns
  • Plant out Spring cabbages
  • Harvest apples, pears and grapes
  • Prune climbing roses
  • Last chance to mow lawns and trim hedges in mild areas
  • Renovate old lawns or create new grass areas by laying turf. This month is an ideal time to make a new lawn from turf as it unlikely to dry out
  • Plant Winter and Spring flowering bulbs such as Daffodils, Narcissi and Crocuses should be planted in the garden or patio containers
  • Check the supports and ties on young trees and climbing plants
  • Re-position tender plants into a frost-free environment such as a greenhouse of conservatory
  • Help to drain your lawn by using a lawn aerator
  • Tidy up the garden shed and clean and sharpen secateurs in preparation for Winter pruning

In the greenhouse

  • Protect plants in your greenhouse from cold winter nights with a heater
  • Water plants in the morning so that the foliage is not wet during the night
  • Clean the greenhouse glass inside and out to maximise the Winter sun and remove any greenhouse shading
  • Ventilate the greenhouse to keep up air movement and alleviate dampness

Wildlife gardening

  • Replenish birdfeeders. All feeds, including whole peanuts, are safe, as the breeding season is now over
  • Leave some seed heads standing, rather than cutting them back, to provide food and shelter for wildlife.
  • Leave mature ivy uncut if possible, as it is an excellent late source of nectar for insects.
  • Make a leaf pile for hibernating mammals and ground-feeding birds overwintering in the UK.
  • Buy a hedgehog hibernation box