One of our great succeses this year is the Dumbleton Perry pear which has been pollinated by hand as demonstrated here.
There has also been bumper crops of apples, pears, quinces, plums and apricots this year!
The Autumn is the time to take stock and reflect upon the gardening year whilst tidying and putting the borders to rest for the winter months.
Here are some of the main jobs to carry out during those crisp autumnal days:
- Plant winter bedding and bulbs for Spring
- Prune climbing roses
As you can see there are some lovely roses in the villages and just keeping them trimmed and in shape, makes they're management so much easier. Firstly remove the dead, diseased or dying branches. Once this is done tie in the new shoots that are needed to fill in the structure or shape you are aiming towards. Any side shoots should then be reduced by two thirds of their length. If the plant is overgrown and congested cut out any of the really old branches at the base and this will help to promote new growth which can trained in their place next year. If your not sure whether the Rose you are about to prune is a rambler or a climber, rambling roses only flower once a year and climbing roses are repeat flowerers throughout the summer months.
- Prune shrub roses to a framework to prevent wind rock during the winter months as seen in the picture below
- Carry out lawn care tasks such as raking out thatch, aerating small lawns with a fork and brushing off worm casts. Obviously with bigger lawns to care for we get to use bigger toys/equipment!
- Leaf clearing
- Cut back perennials that have died down
- Divide herbaceous perennials and rhubarb
- Summer flowering plants should be divided now by gently lifting with a fork, shaking off the excess soil therefore exposing the roots. Some plants produce plant lets that can teased apart and planted. Others need the help of a knife, edging iron or two forks back to back to ease the crowns apart. The resulting plants can be planted in position and generously watered in or potted up to grow on and be planted in the spring.
- Plant out Spring cabbage in the vegetable garden
- Start to plan your seed order for the coming year.