Six Jobs for Saturday

It’s a glorious time of year for colour in our parks and gardens and fortunately as there are so many jobs to be completed, the weather is holding up with plenty of sunshine and very little wind.

My six today includes just a few of the tasks that are due in Autumn – you’ll see that I was overly ambitious with the list I drew up in my enthusiastic mood first thing this morning!

Walking with Ollie in the Arboretum reminded me of a job to help the garden in the future, this wasn’t on the list. Kicking your way through piles of fallen leaves is a joyful pastime, but there’s more to this colourful spectacle than meets the eye. Leaves are valuable for soil and plant health as once completely rotted down to leaf mould (up to 2 years) they increase fungi in the soil, including mycorrhizal, assisting plants in taking up water and nutrients. Leaf mould can be used for a variety of purposes, including seed sowing and when mixed with soil and sand, potting plants. It can also be added to compost to make a mulch for beds and borders. Gather your leaves, and store them for use in the future!

It’s time for lightly pruning roses, in our garden the standard ‘Iceberg’s are a priority as it’s essential to avoid root rock, a risk during the stormy or windy weather we typically see in Autumn; having such a large crown they are particularly vulnerable. I’ve got away with it up to now, but as all the blooms have now died away, the job has been done. For more tips on looking after roses, follow this link!

Our hanging basket at the front door has been looking increasingly sad, it’s getting cooler and it never really recovered after our week away on holiday at the end of September. Using a few great value plants from a well known supermarket branch and some grasses from the garden, the basket has had an Autumn refresh! Unfortunately, I forgot to add the miniature daffodil bulbs, which is a bit annoying!

There’s nothing like choosing tulip bulbs on a Saturday afternoon, browsing the internet and mail shot catalogues, although I have left it rather late this year. I’ve selected a few favourites, orange for the hot border and white/pink for the pastel bed, clockwise from top left ‘Lambada’, ‘Angelique’, ‘Ballerina’, ‘Finola’ and ‘Mount Tacoma’ – ‘Ballerina’ reliably repeats, but the others don’t and they really dislike being disturbed by my digging around in the borders having forgotten where they are! I’ve also picked two new varieties I admired at the RHS Malvern Spring Show this year on the stunning Pheasant Acre Plants display, ‘Armani’ and ‘Hearts Delight’. Planting them all will keep us busy in November!

Remember this sunflower, one of my planting mistakes? Well this is as far as I’ve got with its removal – the roots are fairly deep and care is required to remove them otherwise a production line of root cuttings will take off next year. I don’t expect we’ll get rid of it at the first attempt, some patience will be required. However, we can now see what we’re looking at (including a couple of suppressed cephalaria gigantia)!

Finally, talk about biting off more than one can chew; my sixth job involved clearing the pond. As you can see, I was being far too ambitious as it’s a case of spot the water – this is a job for a weekend all by itself!

That’s my six – for more fabulous weekly ‘sixes’, please visit the founding blog at

Have a great gardening week…..

7 thoughts on “Six Jobs for Saturday

Comments are closed.