Toggle navigation

Autumn 2024 Issue

Autumn 2024 Issue

What's inside?

Most people buy and plant in the spring when soils are at their coldest after winter. However, it’s much better to plant in autumn when soils are warm. Plants establish easily in warm soil and grow more quickly.

Autumn planting relieves stress as air temperatures cool through the autumn months. If you plant in spring, you subject your plants to heat stress and moisture evaporation. Unless you have green thumbs and the time and skill to ensure support for young trees and shrubs, your spring plantings will fail. The perfect time is now: autumn, when the soils are at their warmest, encouraging strong root growth. Meanwhile, the cooling air temperatures puts less pressure on plants to grow new leaves and lose moisture through evaporation. This combination increases success by a measurable percentage.

Another hidden advantage of autumn is that you’re buying potted plants with a sound root system having, in the main, been grown for at least 8-9 months. For additional advice, you can read my article in this magazine, page 24. My special tip when planting is to create a circular water well around the soil surface after your tree or shrub is planted. This not only makes subsequent watering quick and easy but also catches any rainfall.Another tip is to remove the label, especially if it is tied to the stem. Forgotten wire, string and plastic label ties kill plants. Keep the label and enter the details with a location sketch into a garden diary. If your new plant has a plastic support stake, remove it! These ties can cause grief if left unattended.