WHAT TO DO NOW
Plant spring-flowering crocuses and daffodils in holes three times the depth of the bulbs. For a natural look scatter randomly over the soil as opposed to planting in regimented lines. When planting in lawns it’s easier to lift a whole section of turf cutting an X in the grass with a spade and peeling back the turf to expose the soil. Come spring the bulbs will grow up through.
Buy tulip bulbs now while the best range is available, but keep in the shed for planting in November. When the leaves of pumpkins wilt they’re ready to harvest. Cut the stems a few inches on either side of their stalks, as when this T-shaped handle dries and falls away it ensures the stalks are sealed and the gourds keep into winter. Store in a bright, frost-free place, turning the fruits to ensure all parts are in the sun.
Towards the end of the month replace pots of summer-bedding with winter pansies, primulas and cyclamen. While it’s hard to consign summer flowers to the compost, the earlier winter blooms establish in the autumn the better they’ll be. On warm days leave greenhouse windows and doors open to reduce the build-up of mould and mildew.
If you do just one job…
Give porches, cold-frames and greenhouses a good autumn clean sweeping down the glass before they’re filled with tender plants.