The Gardener's Journal is a free monthly gardening guide delivered direct to your inbox.

Each month, receive tips on the top jobs needed in your garden as well as a wealth of information on a range of gardening topics. From sowing seeds to picking fruit, each month get access to information on the care and maintenance of your flowerbeds, vegetable plot and lawn. As with your own gardening diary, the journal is split into separate sections, each covering a different area of garden care.

Wednesday 3 October 2018

This Month In Your Garden - October

Dry your barley in October or you’ll always be sober. 

English folk rhyme

If you don’t dry your barley you will have no malt to brew your beer, folklore tells us. Old rhymes and songs have many tips for us gardeners to help us throughout the gardening year.

Many point to October as a dramatic month of changing colour and this year is no exception as we embrace colder mornings and our Indian summer slips away.

The Lawn Care Guide -October

Top dressing is not just a fashion

So you have your mower set at winter cutting height and cut the lawn according to growth. The edges are trimmed and neat and the leaves raked up. Worm casts have been brushed off on dry days and dead or dying moss removed after September’s weed and feed.

There’s been hardly any rain and although the grass is greening the lawn will benefit from a heavy irrigation. You can lay turf this month or seed worn areas with a pack of multi-purpose grass seed.

Lawn Care : Questions and Answers

Q. When is the best time to top dress the lawn?

The Vegetable Plot -October

The plot thickens

Beans and peas, carrots, turnips, beetroot, they are all there for the picking along with harvesting squash and pumpkins before the frosts. Leave the roots of pea and bean plants in the soil to break down and release nitrogen into the soil.

Time to start garlic cloves from seed bulbs in pots or modules in a cold frame, where you have also planted cauliflower seedlings you have picked off. Keep the frame ventilated.

The Big Glut Recipe - October

Cheese and Broccoli bake

A quick and easy recipe from Delicious Magazine, just right for colder nights.


  • 300g macaroni
  • 200g tenderstem broccoli, cut into thirds
  • 50ml light olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 50g plain flour
  • 550ml semi-skimmed milk
  • 100g spinach
  • 60g vintage cheddar, grated
  • 60g gruyère cheese, grated (or vegetarian alternative)
  • 40g fresh breadcrumbs