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Autumn

The rich changing leaf colours of maples and cherries combine with seed-heads and berries signaling the beginning of the end of the growing season. Autumn is nature’s time for planting, when the ground is moist and cool giving the maximum opportunity for plants to establish roots and settle into their new environment. Plant trees, shrubs, roses, fruit bushes and hedging at this time of year to give them the best possible start.

For people with an allotment or kitchen garden many varieties of vegetable can be planted in autumn. These include Brussels sprouts, broccoli, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, celery, garlic, kale, leeks, lettuce, onions, parsley, peas, potatoes, radishes, spinach and turnips.

Start planting spring flowering bulbs such as daffodils or crocuses which are available at the garden centre now to give them time to settle before spring.

Summer blooming shrubs should be pruned for shape after they have finished flowering. Remove any dead or diseased branches. This is also the best time to move older plants to a new position in the garden.

Don’t forget to bring in tender plants under cover before the first frosts. Plant out fresh colour by doorways and in your patio containers and baskets with combinations of winter pansies, cyclamen and shapely evergreen foliage to welcome you home through the dark winter months.