The first whisper of winter’s cold is on the breeze, but not to worry: November is a month of cosy indulgences from bonfires and flame-coloured trees to the rich flavours of the autumn harvest. And you can always warm yourself up with a few jobs to be done this month in the garden!
- Create shelter for wildlife as hedgehogs, frogs and toads rely on finding hideyholes to overwinter. A stack of logs will do; or you can invest in a bespoke wildlife hotel for five star accommodation. Click here to read our blog post all about this!
- Bring tender plants in under cover before frosts start to bite; pot up tender perennials like Mexican salvias and pelargoniums and bring them in to a frost-free greenhouse or conservatory. Slightly hardier tender plants can be insulated with straw, bracken, horticultural fleece, bubble-wrap etc.
- If you have any stone fountains or water features, it is best to drain them to avoid potential damage from freezing conditions.
- Ensure that the heating system in your Greenhouse is working efficiently to prepare for winter temperatures.
- Winter can be a difficult time for birds so it is nice to make sure that their water and food supplies are topped up. Read our blog post here about helping hungry wildlife in your gardens this autumn/winter.
- Plant ornamental crabapple trees for a gorgeous display in spring and summer as well as pretty fruit. They make delightful small trees for more compact gardens, reaching just 3-4m tall
- If graced by a mild day, it is still ok to plant some flowers: We recommend later flowering spring bulbs such as lilies and tulips and also winter/spring bedding plants such as pansies and primulas. Plant tulips in generous swathes for brilliant colour next spring. Throw your tulip bulbs on the ground randomly to give a more natural effect, and plant where they fall 8-10cm deep.
- Prune dead wood from trees and shrubs as well as any diseased or damaged wood to tidy them up before winter sets in.
- To prevent waterlogging, raise your plant containers onto pot feet.
- Prune back roses to avoid damage from wind-rock.
- Protect any newly-planted fruit trees from female winter moths by tying grease bonds around the trunks.
- Finish planting bare-rooted shrubs and trees.
- Plant garlic as it needs a spell of frost to break bulbs into fat, aromatic cloves. Choose your favourite varieties from the garden centre, then break your seed garlic into cloves and plant 15cm apart.
- Plant rhubarb crowns in soil that’s been generously improved with organic matter such as well-rotted manure or garden compost, making sure the central bud is above soil level to prevent rotting.
- Check stored fruit and vegetables every few weeks to make sure none are starting to rot; if you find any, remove them straight away to eat immediately.