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Winter preparation ... lots to do

(77 Posts)
Kali2 Sat 09-Oct-21 13:26:36

Sun is out, but it is 'proper parky' out there. Hopefully tomorrow will be sunny and warmer- so will dress up warm and get going.

Have to cut off the heads of the Golden Rod- as it is a species that can spread quickly and it on the 'unwanted' list. I will put all the spent flower heads in a strong bin bag, tie it and leave it for 2 years hidden somewhere- then put at bottom of a compost heap before refilling on top.

Then cut stems, and stemps of other spent perenials, and cut up small and into compost. Some of the phlox in white, pink and dark pink are still going strong, and several autumn asters in different colours and sizes and many others- but the rest if ready to cut down. And pick the last of the raspberries- I always eat them as they are, no desserts, no jam, no nothing.

Snow could arrive anytime now- and as much as I love our garden and gardening, I also enjoy this period when the garden rests under thick snow- and I have more time to do other things.

I just love autumn- colours are changing all around us, and the light is magical. I think many people don't like autumn because it makes them aware winter is around the corner. But as I love winter, proper snow winter, cold and crisp, with that magical winter light - then that is OK for me.

What are you up to in the garden?

Hetty58 Sat 09-Oct-21 13:30:22

I love autumn too - but I'm in the middle of the (much hated) trimming of neighbour's Leylandii right now. It's tough going, balanced high on a ladder, arms and shoulders aching like hell!

Shandy57 Sat 09-Oct-21 13:30:27

Where are you that you might get snow Kali2? I'm coastal Northumberland and luckily we don't ever get much, with the exception of the dreadful Beast from the east in Feb/March 2018.

I'm wondering when to cut back my buddleia as the blue tits seem to be finding it interesting.

Casdon Sat 09-Oct-21 13:36:52

I’m sitting here procrastinating when I should be getting on with my garden, I’ve still got loads to do before it gets really cold. My daughter got married this summer and I grew a lot of the flowers for her wedding, many of which are now ready to be pulled out, but I just can’t bring myself to do it. I might sort out the shed this afternoon though, as I need to put lots of stuff away in there, and it won’t fit in at the moment.

Kali2 Sat 09-Oct-21 13:39:12

Shandy, I currently live in the Swiss mountains.

Scones Sat 09-Oct-21 14:41:24

Autumn in a Swiss mountain garden sounds fabulous.

I've spent the last few days digging stones out of my garden. I moved at Christmas and my new garden is near the sea and very stony. It's hard work!! My neighbour is filling in a pond so she's using all the stone I dig up so I've made a new friend in the process.

Love gardening, but love how the garden goes to sleep over winter and gives me a rest.

Jaxjacky Sat 09-Oct-21 14:44:40

I’ve got golden rod too Kali2, it’s become rather intrusive in my quite small garden, so I’m debating what to do with it. I also need to dead head some gaillardia, the cosmos are still flowering with plenty of bees, so I’ll leave them. I don’t have the same urgency as you, but it’s good seeing it tidier. I’ve planted violas this morning in window boxes, a tub and hanging basket. Good luck with yours.

Whitewavemark2 Sat 09-Oct-21 14:46:24

Don’t remind me!! Usually by now I am well away with the autumn clear up, but the compost bin men are on strike, my compost bin is stuffed and I have no petrol to take stuff to the tip.

I am fed up!!

Kali2 Sat 09-Oct-21 14:51:22

We have no collections here, not for compost, not for rubbish, not for anything. I am lucky that I have lots of space and 9 large compost bins on the go all the time.

For the golden rod, as said, do not put flowerheads in seed in compost- but put in rubbish bin. If I were you I'd wait till spring and pull up a lot as it comes up. I love gaillarda.

Whitewavemark2 Sat 09-Oct-21 14:55:55


Where are you that you might get snow Kali2? I'm coastal Northumberland and luckily we don't ever get much, with the exception of the dreadful Beast from the east in Feb/March 2018.

I'm wondering when to cut back my buddleia as the blue tits seem to be finding it interesting.

Cut back buddleia (sp?)at end of winter

Shandy57 Sat 09-Oct-21 15:03:45

Thanks Whitewavemark2, I love seeing the birds hopping around on it. I was worried when I moved here that I'd not see any birds, and although I haven't seen my favourite long tailed tits, I have got a barn owl smile

Jaxjacky Sat 09-Oct-21 15:05:03

Whitewave well that’s very frustrating, our fortnightly garden waste bin collection missed a couple of weeks, staff shortages meant prioritising household waste.
Shandy we had to get rid of our self seeded buddleia, it was lifting the paving slabs, I’m looking at dwarf ones, I’d like one back for the butterflies.

Whitewavemark2 Sat 09-Oct-21 15:07:37

Mine is still in flower and today it is very mild and sunny and lots of red admirals have visited. I reckon they are one of biggest butterflies.

Lizzie72 Sat 09-Oct-21 15:28:07

The sedums all coming out here, and there are still hardy geraniums, and some valiant roses! I used to cut lots back in late autumn, but now tend to leave it til Spring, as apparently better for wildlife.

grannyactivist Sat 09-Oct-21 15:38:29

I spent the morning relaxing at the beach with my husband, my sons, and their families, and the weather was glorious.

There is a lot to do in both the garden and on the allotment, but I’m feeling really tired and I just can’t motivate myself. We had our two year old granddaughter to stay for a couple of nights last week and she was a little pickle on one of them so I’m short of sleep.

Callistemon Sat 09-Oct-21 16:20:57

What are you up to in the garden?

I sat in the lovely sunshine 🌞
To be fair, I was thinking about what I need to do and DH pruned back the clematis which had not totally recovered from the cold snap earlier in the year.
I did a lot of pruning of herbaceous plants last week but just noticed that Rozanne has gone very brown - should I chop it back?

Is it the wrong time to report some small shrubs - I assume it's ok as they should be making more root in the winter.
They may need to go in the greenhouse over winter as they're not totally hardy.

Callistemon Sat 09-Oct-21 16:21:44

Did the Chelsea Chop work?

Callistemon Sat 09-Oct-21 16:23:04

Lizzie72 your hardy geranium looks like Rozanne but mine is looking very sad, never seen it looking like that before.

Callistemon Sat 09-Oct-21 16:25:35


M0nica Sat 09-Oct-21 16:30:45

Spent the afternoon belatedly digging potatoes. The whole garden has gone to hell in a hand basket this summer. I think it was my reaction to a year of having first DD and then DH dangerously ill. Once it was all sorted I sort of collapsed in a heap, what gardening was done was done late and half heartedly.

However not all is doom and disaster. Last week I harvested 20 beautiful big corn-cobs and the one courgette plant that survived has provided me with nearly 20lbs of courgettes.

I love autumn, and I love autumn gardening I hope the weather stays dry for another week so that I can get the veg patch sorted and put away until spring, so I can then start on the rest of the garden.

Germanshepherdsmum Sat 09-Oct-21 16:43:36

There’s very little to cut back in my garden. Penstemons, roses, asters, gaura, monkshood, Japanese anemones, salvia, persicaria all flowering. The dahlias are very good this year too and the hydrangea flowers have taken on beautiful pinky tints as they age. Back in the 50s and 60s everything would be cut back this month and winter bedding and bulbs would be in, then the garden was sleeping until spring. Climate change!

Mapleleaf Sat 09-Oct-21 16:59:10

I’ve pottered about a bit in the garden this week, mainly dead heading and cutting back dead stems on plants. As many are still flowering, including the petunias, I’m leaving them be for the moment. I actually collected a lot of petunia seeds yesterday, but not sure if they’ll come true when I plant them into seed trays next spring, but I’m willing to give them a go.

Yesterday, I planted some allium bulbs in the front borders, so they will be something to look forward to late spring/early summer next year.

The grass could do with a trim, too.

Did anyone see the gardeners world programme last night all about trees? I really enjoyed it, they really are fascinating plants.

Casdon Sat 09-Oct-21 17:35:51

I’ve got some shrubs I’d like to report Callistemon, particularly the non-berried pyracantha! Would Monty be interested do you think?

Kim19 Sat 09-Oct-21 17:39:20

I'm usually up to scratch with the cutting back and tidying but I've never known such an insane time of plants reflowering out of season and I'm not prepared to cut them back. All very peculiar but I'm going with the grow(!!). I've a wonderful Wisteria which is going so insane it could be a trifid. It's going to be a challenge.

Teacheranne Sat 09-Oct-21 17:54:12

I’ve only just able to get back in my garden after my patio was relaid in September then I found out I’d had a TIA (mini stroke) earlier this year following my eye test so have had several hospital visits and medication changes. I now have decorators in for three weeks which is hampering me again.

Luckily the heavy pruning of bushes was done in September by a gardener but I do want to clear some weeds and ground cover plants. Last year I put down a deep layer of soil improver and left it to over winter and it made a big difference to the quality of my very poor soil. My son is going to help me do it again this year so I’m planning a few goes at tidying up over the next couple of weeks, I can now only do an hour or so at a time due to arthritis but I enjoy pottering.