Sowing and Planting
This is a good time to take root cuttings from perennials. Take 5cm cuttings and lay them horizontally on a growing medium of perlite and cuttings compost ( 50-50 mix). Cover with a thin layer of compost, water lightly and keep in an unheated greenhouse or coldframe.
Plant out spring bedding such as polyanthus, wallflowers, pansies and violas.
Sow sweet peas under cover in deep pots.
Pruning and Plant Management
Clear away any decaying or dead flower stems or leaves that no longer serve any visual purpose.
Acers can be pruned when they are dormant to prevent ‘bleeding’ when the sap is rising in the spring.
Restore grit around alpines to keep them from making contact with wet soil.
Bring succulents in pots under cover or in a sheltered, warmer place.
Pots placed near to a building over the winter will keep drier and warmer.
Maintenance and Planning
Keep tidying up leaves as they fall and keep to produce leaf mold. Make sure you brush them off your other plants to avoid smothering them and causing browning of good leaves.
Use last year’s leaf mold to spread under trees and shrubs as a thick layer of mulch to protect them throughout the winter. Leaf mold is also invaluable in improving soil structure.
Tidy up your greenhouse, clean it down and line it with bubble-wrap to insulate it throughout the winter.
Wash out your pots as well – you will appreciate it when you come to use them next year.
Also wash and store any canes you have removed from the garden.