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.

Monday 31 October 2022

This Month in Your Garden - November

“The third day comes a frost, a killing frost.” William Shakespeare

So far, through October we have largely escaped the frost and the Indian summer has seen bees and wasps still active right at the end of the month. However, change is inevitable as we march towards the darker days and those frosts will come. 

The Lawncare Guide - November

 Less stress makes finer lawns

A lawn of fine turf grows under conditions that are not entirely natural. The winter months will subject it to stress with the cold, wet and freezing conditions, so it needs a helping hand. You will probably have scarified, aerated and treated the lawn to a fertilizer last month. 

Lawn Care: Questions & Answers

Q. Is it safe to lay turf in November and won’t the frosts kill the grass?

The Vegetable Plot - November

Fruit of your labours

You’re keen to grow as many vegetables as you can and you have a great lawn, but that has left you little room for fruit. Now is a good time to plant fruit trees and if you’re short on space you could try growing espalier against a wall of fence or why not grow standards in containers on a patio? 

The Big Glut - November

Cock-a-leekie traybake with croutons 

A different take on the traditional Scottish soup from Delicious Magazine


  • 8 free-range chicken thighs
  • 2 large carrots, chopped
  • 3 leeks, sliced in half lengthways
  • 2 fennel bulbs, sliced into 1cm pieces
  • 3 clementines or easy peelers, 2 cut into slices, 2 juiced
  • 200ml white wine or chicken stock
  • Grated zest and juice 1 lemon
  • 2 tbsp wholegrain mustard
  • 5 tbsp olive oil
  • Bunch fresh thyme
  • 2 large pieces sourdough, torn

Tuesday 4 October 2022

The Lawncare Guide - October

The patient in recovery 

The long, hot summer that led to drought, brown lawns and heavy compaction was heartache for proud lawn gardeners who love their Wimbledon stripes. For many of us, hosepipe bans are still in place. But grass is nothing but resilient and the first real rains for a long time saw the lawn start to recover.

Lawn Care: Questions & Answers

Q. I am ordering top dressing but need to know what quantity I should get?

The Vegetable Plot - October

Not lost to frost 

We have had had a few pretty cold nights at the end of September and in some areas frost has threatened. All the more reason to lift turnips, parsnips, carrot and beetroot. Cut the tops off turnips before storing in a frost-free place. Fork up potatoes and store them in a cool, dry place (the garage is a good idea).

The Big Glut - October

Venison with pumpkin mash and cavolo nero 

From Delicious Magazine. Serves 4-6, hands-on time 1 hour, oven time 3 hours

  • 1kg venison shoulder, bone removed (ask your butcher to do this)
  • 2 tbsp rapeseed oil
  • 1 onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 carrot, roughly chopped
  • 1 celery stick, roughly chopped
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 star anise
  • 1 tsp juniper berries
  • 1 litre beef stock
  • 500ml good red wine
  • 1kg pumpkin
  • 75g unsalted butter
  • 3 thyme sprigs
  • 50ml double cream
  • 400g cavolo nero

This Month in Your Garden - October

“Now autumn’s fire burns slowly along the woods.” William Allingham

The tapestry of autumn colours never ceases to delight the eye as the trees make their gradual transition into winter. October brings many jobs to the gardener, but it’s not all work. Planning next year’s borders can mean pleasant hours of drawing inspiration from visiting the garden centre or ordering from the catalogues.