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Monday 1 October 2012

The Vegetable Plot – OCTOBER

Early October should be good for planting spring cabbages from sowings in August and earthing up of celery and leeks is best done now. It’s the ideal time to take cuttings of bush fruit to cultivate.

Cauliflowers may need some protection by bending outer leaves over any hearts forming. Continue to blanch endive if you started in August and September. Fruit growth on peaches, nectarines and apricots under glass can still ripen given the right conditions.

Cut back asparagus and globe artichokes. Transfer cauliflowers grown in the open in September to a frame and only close the when there is danger of frost. You can guard your apples and pears against winter moth by putting grease bands around the tree trunks to trap grubs. This will help protect next year’s crop.

If you like a supply of fresh mint at Christmas you can lift and box some by laying roots thinly on a tray of light compost, covering them with a layer of the same compost. Keep them moist at a temperature of over 10°C (50°F) and water when the shoots appear.   

  • Plant garlic
  • Take hardwood cuttings of bush fruit: gooseberries, blackcurrants, red currants, white currants, quinces, figs, grapes
  • Gather remaining apples and pears into store
  • Prick off cauliflowers
  • Lift and store turnips in a frost-proof place for a good supply, cutting off the tops.

Gardener’s notes: 
Crops in season include: Jerusalem artichoke, broccoli, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, celeriac, celery, endive, kohl rabi, leeks, lettuce, mushrooms, parsnips, peas, spinach, turnips
Under glass: French beans, cucumbers, mustard & cress, radish, tomatoes

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