September 2018 Newsletter
Ready for summer to make way for the autumn? Despite the warm days of this dry and long summer there are signs of an upcoming autumn. Nights are drawing in earlier. Swallows and geese fill the sky, on the move to warmer climates and the last of the summer blooms are hanging on.
Indeed these indicators means it time to address autumn tasks in the garden. So read on and find out what we recommend to get your garden fit for the seasons ahead.
The Unwins Team
Our top 6 jobs for the month
Order packets of seeds now for sowing next year. This way you the greatest choice of bedding plants and perennials at the best price. In sealed packets they remain fresh and viable (able to germinate) for months and months if you store them somewhere cool and dry.
You can sow some flowers now to germinate in the autumn and toughen up during the winter. This encourages them to flower that bit earlier next year, keeping you that one step ahead from the off.
Give your lawn a seasonal treat. It’s been a tough summer on your lawn with dry brown grass a common sight during this year’s summer. So now is time to give your lawn the care it could do with a mow, rake, spiking and feeding session to restore it to full health once again.
Mow on a higher cut if you can adjust the setting on your lawnmower. This is to keep it neat and presentable without stressing your grass by cutting the grass blades too short.
It’s a great time to cut back some of your perennials and treat the soil in your flower beds to some rich and nutritious soil. The existing soil is likely to be tired and depleted of nutrients from the dry summer so add a bag of Organic Farm Manure to around a three square metre (32sq ft) area.
This will attract earthworms – one of the best natural soil cultivators in your garden - as well as improve drainage and soil structure for happy plants next season.
Leaves are starting to fall in September. Keep them out of your pond with netting. We like to pop leaves in bags punched with holes and store them away for a year or two. Leaf mould is a great soil conditioner which makes airy soil perfect for the roots of the tiniest seedlings to mature established trees.
Leaves left to rot in your pond increase the nitrate levels which in turn can lead to foul water and an unhealthy water environment for your fish. Leave water as clear as you can in the seasons ahead.
These flowers are bred for you to give you colour and scent when the days are at their darkest. These flowers are instrumental in keeping your spirits up as the nights draw in earlier and keep your garden colourful and vibrant.
It’s also time to get in your daffodils, tulips and woodland bulbs for next spring.
We recommend that you plant bulbs in a free-draining soil. Add grit to flower beds with heavy clay soil or plant in containers with specially-formulated Bulb Compost so they are happy over the winter ready to sprout into life next spring.
Indoor bulbs are the flowers for you if you’re too excited to wait until the spring for bulb displays. Prepare these charming and charismatic flowers now for blooms that adorn your mantelpieces or form a table centrepiece.
These bulbs have been given a cold treatment in August to trick them into thinking they have undergone a winter and trigger them into producing flowers as early as November or December.
Amaryllis Benfica - Showy red blooms perfect for Christmas decoration.
Amaryllis Elvas - Double-layered petals of white and imperial purple
Narcissus Paperwhite Ziva - The sweetest scent from pretty narcissi
Pretty yet devastating pest introduced from the Mediterranean on imported plants. Affecting a host of herbs including rosemary, thyme and sage the rosemary beetle mates in late summer and the grubs hatch, feasting on the foliage and flowers of your prize plants.
One treatment of concentrate Resolva Bug Killer keeps working for up to a fortnight so a little goes a long way. If you prefer an organic approach, hand pick off adults and larvae, collecting and feeding to the birds.
It’s show time
The Harrogate Flower Show, North Yorkshire opens its gates to visitors on 14-16th September. Indulge in this year’s theme of Plants of Pleasure- a journey through millennia of celebrated garden plants. See the entries of garden border competition Borderline and browse the Pavilion of your favourite flowers and new exciting varieties all in the lovely setting of the Great Yorkshire Showground.