What to do in the garden in October

Fallen leaves signal autumn, so get your wheelbarrow and rake out and get clearing.
Image source: Bildagentur Zoonar GmbH

October is the month for Halloween, garden maintenance and planting winter-flowering bedding plants. Get gardening!

Plants and Flowers

Make sure your Gladiolus corms are keep frost-free.
Image source: Gladiolus ‘Wine and Roses’ from Van Meuwen

Fruit and Veg

Plan for next summer and get your garlic planted.
Image source: yuris
  • Plant your garlic now for bigger crops next summer. If you don’t have the space for growing garlic at the moment consider spring-planting garlic or try growing garlic in containers.
  • Prune any fruited raspberry canes on your summer raspberries if you haven’t done so already. Cut the canes right back to ground level and tie in the new green canes to support wires or fencing.
  • Tidy up around your strawberry plants, removing dead leaves and old straw. This improves air circulation and reduces the risk of pests and diseases building up over winter.

Tree, Shrubs and Grasses

Get your trees planted in October.
Image source: g-stockstudio
  • October is the ideal month for planting new trees, shrubs and perennial plants. For help with planting trees and shrubs take a look at our ‘How to plant trees and shrubs’ article. For advice on growing perennial plants click here.
  • Plant bare-root fruit trees as this gives the trees time to establish roots whilst the soil is still warm, resulting in vigorous growth next spring.

Garden Maintenance

Improve your lawn in October with raking and repairing bare patches.
Image source: Maria Evseyeva
  • Autumn is the best time of year to improve your lawn. Trying aerating it with a garden fork, raking dead plant material (thatch) from the surface and repairing bare patches. Clear up fallen leaves regularly in the autumn to allow light and air to the grass.
  • Re-use the compost from your annual container displays as a soil improver, or to mulch around your perennials plants, trees and shrubs.
  • Install compost bins in your garden ready to fill with autumn leaves, dead plant material and woody prunings. Make sure you layer these plant materials with grass clippings or vegetable kitchen waste to aid the composting process.
  • Protect your half-hardy plants by packing the crown with shredded paper or straw and securing it in place with a layer of horticultural fleece or hessian sacks. Alternatively bring your plants into a greenhouse or conservatory.

What’s your top priority for October? Let us know in the comments below, or share them with us over on our Facebook page.

Van Meuwen

Author: Van Meuwen

Horticultural mail order specialists. Working hard to bring you the best quality well-established plants as well as exciting new varieties.

3 thoughts on “What to do in the garden in October”

  1. 3yr condon plum tree, how should I prune it? including condon apple,pear, green gage.

    any help would be much appreciated. thank you.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *