The barmy, sometimes stuff, days of summer are coming to an end. We’ve had more rain in August than we care to admit but, let’s face it, it did cut down on our watering time! While September might feel like there’s not much to do compared to the busy summer months, it is the ideal time to divide existing plants and add more from the list you have drawn up from your countless garden visits. The soil is still warm, and there’s less need to water given the cooler days. Here’s what you can do in the garden in September:
In the garden
- Now is a great time to order trees and shrubs, the soil is still warm and moist and will grow vigorously next spring.
- You still have time to trim the hedges, but do it at the start of the month.
- Plant new perennials in your borders.
- Split and replant herbaceous perennials.
- Feed and deadhead hanging baskets and container plants; they will likely keep flowering until the first frost.
- Take hardwood cuttings.
- Prune climbing and rambling roses.
In the kitchen garden
- Keep harvesting crops. Now is the time to freeze, dry, pickle and store the fruits of your labour!
- Remove leaves shadowing pumpkins to help ripening.
- Pot up tender herbs such as mint and keep in the kitchen for easy access to fresh produce.
- Cut off foliage on main crop potatoes.
- When beans and peas finish cropping, leave the roots in the soil as they will slowly release nitrogen as they break down.
- To prevent birds feasting on your brassicas, cover and secure them with netting.
- Sow green manures such as clover and rye grass. Once dug in they will improve the soil.
- Pot up strawberry runners for free plants next year.
- Sow hardy annuals now for bigger plants next year.
- Start planting early flowering bulbs such as crocus and muscari.
- Umbellifers like Ammi majus – they need a cold period of roughly 3 months.
- winter salad – keep in greenhouse.
- Close vents and doors of the greenhouse.
- Carry out essential lawn maintenance to avoid water logging and compaction.
- You can also lay a new lawn as long as there’s no risk of frosts.
- Create a compost bin.
- Dig or double-dig clay soil. Improve it with organic matter and/or horticultural grit before it’s frozen or too wet.
- Net pond before leaves fall on pond.
- Collect seeds from perennials and hardy annuals.
So there you have it! There’s plenty to do this month. Tackle these tasks a couple at a time, there’s no need to try and do everything in one weekend. A garden is to be enjoyed, not to be burden. What is your least favourite gardening “chore”? Let us know in the comments or on social media!