autumn lightIt’s in the air. The slightly cooler mornings; the first tinge of russet on the leaves; the damp earthy smell on wet days; Autumn is on the way.

Soon we’ll be able to indulge in smoky bonfires at dusk and throw on a thick sweater for gardening. And while the plants and flowers have their last burst of colour, there is a general feeling in September, that everything is gently collapsing, even while the dahlias are having their last ‘hurrah’.dahlias

But, Autumn can be a really invigorating time in the garden – a chance to clear out the debris, assess what’s worked and make plans for the following year. The vegetable garden can also be exciting as squashes and pumpkins swell and harvests of autumn fruits and veg hit their peak. So don’t despair as you watch things ‘go-over’ – there’s plenty to keep you busy in the garden and looking forward to the coming months.

Keeping the show going…

penstemon

Plants such as sedum and crysanthemum will keep flowering into the Autumn, as will many other plants, so keep deadheading roses, dahlias and penstemons as long as you can.

Continue to feed and deadhead your containers and hanging baskets until the first frosts.

Plant out garlic bulbs and Autumn onion sets.

Enjoy collecting the harvest! Autumn raspberries, ripening apples, blackberries, potatoes, carrots…

Liz Gardener showed off some colorful carrots she grew from seed. Gardener has a xeriscape garden in both the front and back yards of her Denver home which includes both decorative plants and vegetables.  Gardener was photographed at home November 1, 2012.  Karl Gehring/ The Denver Post

Getting ready for next year…

Plant out biennials like wallflowers, violas and foxgloves.

You can also plant new perennials into your borders in early Autumn, while the soil is still warm.

As the weather cools cut back and divide herbaceous perrenials to create new plants and fill gaps for next year.

pumpkinHelp pumpkins ripen for Halloween by removing any leaves covering the crop and keeping them off wet ground.

Start planting hyacinths, daffoldils and narcissus for next spring.

Clearing up after the party…

Clear old bean and pea plants to the ground once they’ve finished cropping.

Pot up strawberry runners to make new plants for next year; also clear away any straw form the base of the plants to prevent diseases over the winter.

Weed the veg plot to reduce weeds over the winter.

For more information see the RHS link on monthly jobs here: www.rhs.org.uk/advice/in-month/september

And, don’t forget to contact Grayshaw & Yeo if you want help or advice with clearing your garden in the Autumn. Click HERE to find out more on our Gardening Services page.