September 22


Gardening is like it is in retail, it is seasonal. Supermarkets place their orders for Christmas stock at the beginning of the year and Easter Eggs, for example, before the summer. But, like gardeners, they are always planning ahead. So at the moment, we need to plan how we want the garden and pots/planters to look in the Spring and early Summer.

At Tidy Gardens, we are currently ordering spring and early summer flowering bulbs and winter bedding plants. It is no easy task for a business to ‘get it right’, but for the individual Gardener, it is relatively straightforward. You decide on your budget and buy accordingly, or you buy what you want to plant and choose where they will go.

I always recommend that any bulbs in pots be relocated to somewhere in the garden. The main reason for this is that the second year flowering is never as good as the first flowering and if you want a good display, go for new. I also always buy new Tulips for the garden each year, as they rarely last two years. Mice and the cold/wet conditions usually disposed of them over the winter months. Next month I will highlight some unusual bulbs for interest in the Spring months.



Back to now, after that long dry spell, the lawns are not in a good state, and it will be a good thing to try and bolster them up before Autumn sets in. I would recommend a good feed applied asap and water it in if we hit another dry spell. Grass is a very resilient plant, and it will bounce back, but a little help won’t go amiss. Also, a light scarify would help remove some of the ‘dead’ grass left over from the dry conditions. Some ‘bald’ patches may have appeared on the lawn, and there is still time to do some repair work. Simply loosen the area with a hand fork, mix in some grass seed, and then give a little watering. At this time of year, the seed should start to take within a week.



Many plants have grown exceptionally well during the warm spell and may need staking up as they get a little ‘leggy’. Also, keep deadheading all your flowering plants. This should encourage more flowering buds to enjoy. Sweet Peas have been doing very well, and it would be advisable to give them regular feed to keep them going and, of course, keep picking the flowers to stop them from going to seed and producing seed pods. Those of you who have planted lettuce, rocket and other salad items, keep them going by harvesting the leaves and enjoy fresh salad.

Back to planning ahead, September is an excellent month to start making some changes to the garden, enhancing a border by introducing new plants and removing and/or dividing old ones. Like us, with age, some plants just do not do as well as they used to, and it might just be time to take the decision to take them out and replace them with a new or different plant. It is an ongoing, never-ending part of gardening that requires your garden to evolve. It may be that a border needs to be enlarged or reduced. Either way, September is a good time to do it. On the other hand, you may feel that it is time to do away with a border altogether and want to turf it or have it turned into a gravel bed, to reduce the long-term workload. All these things need to be planned, and now is the time to do it before winter sets in.

Gardening is a great pass time and gives a lot of pleasure. It helps take your mind off the day-to-day problems and provides a lot of satisfaction with everything you achieve, but remember to take some time to sit down and enjoy what you have created.


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