Some top tips from Jeremy on beds and borders.
Remembrance Sunday is always in November, and the poignancy of this day is different for all of us but can I suggest that we leave a small area of soil and sprinkle some poppy seed over it. Lightly fork them in, treat them as an annual and next year they will give a lovely show of red in a nice sunny spot.
BEDS AND BORDERS
Don’t forget to mulch the beds and borders at this time, which is best done with peat or compost. Farmyard manure is best for the vegetable patch, and the mulch wants to be 2-3 inches deep. This keeps the weeds at bay, improves the soil and looks good. Importantly, it acts as a blanket to protect the roots of perennial plants, which will have died down for the winter. In addition, rhubarb crowns and gunnera will be protected from the cold and frost.
Our collection of seeds are perfect to peruse in those times of peace and quiet. Think about what to grow from seed, how you are going to grow them – will it be in bags, raised beds or (if lucky enough) in the ground?
Remember that onion sets sown now will be more established. Garlic sown in November needs a well-drained soil to get its roots into, and cloches are needed to give protection from the cold. You can always get some straw early in the New Year to give warmth to rhubarb forcers, and cloches for an early crop in February and March.
Daffodils can be planted into the New Year, plus remember to split clumps of bulbs. Tulips are best grown in clumps. Consider different heights to give colour from front to back of a border. In the New Year think of dahlias and the lilies. Think scent around the patio and different heights to give a screen or a hedge of colour.
With the cold weather starting to slowly drift in as we move into the winter months I have started putting together my suggestions and tips for those considering to plant any hedging plants this winter so look out for that post in the near future.
Jeremy Homewood (founder of Bumbles Plant Centre)