Digging in the compost
Making compost is not only the ideal way to complete the growth and decay cycle, it’s also very satisfying to produce your own fertile mixture to replenish your soil. You can compost any organic waste from the garden and kitchen, mixing in layers with woody material, leaves and grass clippings.
A composter can be a simple wooden construction you might want to build yourself, a composting bin, they come in all shapes, sizes and prices, or even a ComposTumbler, a drum you turn every day for a couple of weeks and out comes rich, fertilising compost.
Other things to be done this month include plenty of digging to work leafmould, manure or garden compost into flower beds and forking over herbaceous borders. Plant tulip bulbs in informal drifts early in the month. Choose a sunny spot and lighten heavy soil by adding course grit, planting the bulbs on a layer or grit for drainage.
Carry on the good work from October, planting trees, shrubs and climbers. If the greenhouse is dirty give it a good wash down inside and out. If you have plants growing in cold or heated frames keep an eye on them between now and spring, watering to prevent the soil from getting dry. Protect alpines and woolly leaved plants from winter rains by putting glass or plastic over them supported on a wire frame. Keep gathering leaves to make leafmould.
- Plant lilies and hyacinths
- Prune roses
- Plant bare-rooted roses
- Lay turf
- Plant irises in groups of three in a prominent position
- Plant honeysuckles (Lonicera), clematis, jasmines
- Plant deciduous or coniferous hedges
- Sow sweet peas in pots
- Consider next year’s October colour schemes
- Plant containers for winter colour