A whole season swallowed up by COVID and time to think about the what to do next in the garden. The Spring in the main was pretty good and the interest in gardening lifted hugely as people, locked down sought occupation. There were many new to the task and most I suspect will be pleased with their endeavours. The blackfly has been testing and the caterpillars fairly voracious, but with regular watering things have grown and flourished. Anyone who has planted French beans will be particularly pleased. Demand for colour has gone on and on, with big demand for late bedding.
As the summer runs towards the autumn we wrestle with the start of the next bit. Autumn onion sets are arriving in garden centres and gaps are appearing on the vegetable plot in readiness. Spring Cabbage plants and Spinach (together with Chard) are all available. There is still time to sow a few seeds too, leaf lettuce, radish, rocket and spring onions will all still deliver. Winter Lettuce (like Arctic King or Density) as well as perpetual spinach will also come through. Keep on top of September harvesting, many vegetables will perform with encouragement and the worst thing is to leave things to get too big. So keep on top of beans, courgettes and tomatoes. I have been sowing one or two less common salad supplements and now have Claytonia, Celtuce and Corn salad on the go. The celtuce is particularly interesting, offering a salad leaf and a crunchy stem which can be steamed, stir fried or grated for salad. The stem is exposed as the leaves are plucked for use. I will keep you posted.
As the month rolls on, we will consider flower borders, the pansies and violas are back, together with all the old favourites. So you can be planting Wallflowers, Sweet William, bellis daises and other biennial items and then there are the bulbs. Centres are full of them and the range continues to extend, as more new varieties reach the shelf. As usual I am hooked once more on tulips.
If you have had enough of it all, or you just fancy a bit more lawn, then September is a great month for grass seed sowing. The days are shorter and the ground remains warm, so seed germinates quickly.
And finally, Keep tidying up too, commitment wanes once the weather turns.