September in many respects is one of the most important months of the year for many keen gardeners around the UK. The summer season is drawing to an end and it is time to start planning ahead for the longer nights, colder wetter weather and winter frosts beginning to bite the ground.
Here are our 10 tips for preparing your garden for autumn – you can also check out our twitter feed for DIY and lifestyle ideas.
1. Dig up those annual flowers – quick and easy to grow, it may seem counter-productive to uproot up these plants that looked so good during the spring and summer months, but it needs to be done.
2. Add fertiliser to your lawn – why would you add fertiliser to your lawn? You can give nature a helping hand by adding a good quality lawn fertiliser before your garden faces the autumn / winter season.
3. Cover your garden’s pond – this will reduce the amount of clearing work you’ll have when spring comes around. By covering your pond with a net you’re preventing the majority of autumn’s falling leaves from polluting the water.
4. Cut your garden’s perennials – perennials will grow and survive almost all-year round. Surviving ground frost and growing like it’s nobody’s business. Dispose of all of the cuttings to prevent further growth in other areas of your garden.
5. De-weed your garden – weeds are a pain for most gardeners in the UK and if you don’t get them under control prior to the beginning of winter you could face a massive de-weeding job on your hands come springtime.
6. Cover your garden furniture and store your tools – it’s important to keep your tools in a safe, dry and secure place all year round anyway, but never more so in winter when the wet and cold weather can cause rusting and general deterioration to your, no doubt, expensive gardening gear.
7. Sow cover crops into your soil – a cover crop is essentially used to manage and hopefully reduce the amount of soil erosion, its quality, fertility, diseases and other negative problems your garden may experience during harsh winters.
8. Protect young trees and plants – just like us, young trees need plenty of attention and protection as they grow. This is particularly true during the winter months when the weather takes a turn for the worse. Start off by getting a few rolls of tree-guarding wraps to protect the trunks.
9. Organic compost & mulching – give your garden beds a few inches of compost all over and finish off the process by adding a later of mulch. This effective strategy ensures your lot is given appropriate protection from rodents in addition to plenty of nutrients.
10. Keep an eye on those roots – novice gardeners often make the mistake of removing plants completely, including the roots. The preferred method is to cut the plant at the surface, giving the roots the chance to aerate your garden soil.