Well, that was a curious month wasn’t it ? Wet, blustery and all in all rather too mild. The wet brought a few leaves down, but the mildness has created a hiatus in the planting calendar, with so much revived bedding continuing to dominate borders and tubs, thereby delaying much of the planting. So get the Pansies in quickly or don’t bother. The month did allow caterpillar mauled greens to put on a bit of repair and a few cabbage that I had all but given up on, do look as though they will eventually be fit for the table after all. I also look to have managed to settle some late Spinach, which is a real bonus.
This week I will be getting my broad beans in and I may put in a few Meteor Peas. The turn of October into November is perfect timing. I also plan to put out some garlic and a row of hardy spring onions. The onions are a bit late, but cost pence to do and they have good flavour even if chopped like chives. I have also cleaned up a space for a few more Raspberry canes. They have been brilliant this year, I just could have used a few more (and soft fruit plants are about now).
I have just about finished with my flower borders. I have a few sumptuous tulips to pop in and then I will get on to the the big clean up. Hopefully it will be the last cut of the lawn before winter, I have some clipping and trimming to do and I want to be sure to lift the last of my dahlia tubers. The dahlias have been quite magnificent this year and after last winters’ wet run, I want save them from rotting. I will chop the tops off to within four or five inches of the tuber and dig them up. They will go straight in undercover and I will clean off the dirt as they dry. As long as they stay dry and frost free until the spring they will come back. I just put them into a tray of damp compost in late March and they will revive.
Cleaning also means tidying and this year I will be looking to reduce the hideout opportunities for rodents. Last winter was a nightmare and there does seem to be a good deal of activity already.
And finally a message to all who missed out this year on the amazing climbing Spinach (Basella Rubra)……..make sure you get hold of some next year. What a winner!