It's time to: October
Fruit fly are about. Lure and trap them now. If you can get your neighbours to do the same you will double protection of the summer tomato bounty.
Pumpkins can be grown vertically over fences and trellis to save on space while still providing a plentiful harvest for next winter’s soups. And no they don’t need stockings to hold themselves up – that’s a myth.
Plan your Christmas party colour scheme and plant to suit.
Stuff a hanging basket with flower and foliage. Water often, especially if the wind is blowing. Fertilise regularly too.
Make garden Christmas gifts now; perhaps a pot of herbs, grown from seed.
Spring-flowering shrubs with arching canes, such as weigela, philadelphus and deutzia should be allowed to develop their natural form so don’t give them a short back and sides prune. Instead remove canes three years and older at ground level. This allows the new soft arching canes some room.
Summer stunners such as zinnia, cleome and sunflowers can be sown directly into warm garden soil or pots.
Fill any bare spots, lawn gaps or dips with top dressing and feed evenly with granular fertiliser. A light aeration will help compacted lawns get the drink they so desperately need.
Plant lilium bulbs for Christmas colour. They’ll come back every year.