- Keep deadheading flowers so that they keep producing more flowers until the first frosts
- Take Yew hedge cuttings. Take semi ripe cuttings to a length of 6 to 8 inches. Put them straining into a plastic bag so that they don’t try out. Cut to size and then bury them up to their foliage in compost. Put them somewhere warm. They should then produce roots so that they are ready to plant out next Spring.
- Net Brassicas. Cabbage White butterflies are drawn to cabbage leaves where they will lay their eggs which hatch and turn into caterpillars which will eat your plants with disastrous results. The only way to prevent this is with garden netting which is fine enough to stop butterflies. Even with this in place it’s a good idea to check every week for signs of their eggs.
- Plant Kale plants. Don’t forget to plant them deep and firm them in well. They become large plants which get blown around so need a good foundation. Plants should be about 18 inches apart. Kale will grow through to next May and you just pick the leaves when you need them through the winter. Monty Don on Gardners World had the clever idea of filling in the gaps between the kale plants with a catch-crop of Oak Leaf Salad Bowl Lettice plants.
This weekend and the week ahead is a great time to harvest lavender from the garden and it’s something the children will love helping with both now and in the weeks to come when the lavender has been dried and you are ready to use it.
I like to pick the flowers and leave them in the conservatory for a few days to dry. In the week that lead up to Christmas the children can help me with making little lavender pillows and pouches to give to friends as Christmas presents and I’ll be keeping a few for myself. The smell of lavender coming from the little pouches as I open my draws always takes me back to the long warm summer evenings with the scent of lavender and rosemary in the air.
I’m based just outside Norwich and Saturday has got off to a wet and windy start and the outlook for Sunday is even worse…. I thought I’d sit down for a few minutes with a coffee and work out what jobs need to be done in the garden this weekend and hope to get a few jobs done later when it stops raining.
- If you haven’t already tidied up the remains of the daffidils this needs to be done. It’s also a good time to carefully dig up any large clumps of bulbs and split them up and replant around the garden. This is great fun with the children as you can get them to dig holes with you, plant the bulbs and they get excited about seeing them pop up next spring.
- Now is the time to plan biennials such as wallflowers.
- Once onion and garlic foliage starts to dye back then they are ready to pull up and dry. Best to leave this for a nice sunny day. The children love to get involved in harvesting food from the garden. They can also help tie the onion sand garlic into strings so they can be hung up to dry.
- Now is the time to prune old wood from fruit trees such as cherry and plum.