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Advice for Autumn

Monday, 03rd October 2016 04:22pm by Charlotte Senn

As we journey further into the year, we are thinking of innovative ways to celebrate autumn and its colours. Our horticultural expert, Martin Ogden shares his favourite ways to embrace the change in season. From leaf collages and creating Christmas baubles to autumn wreath making.

‘I for one have been collecting conkers again - every year I fill bowls of these beautiful shiny delights to decorate the house. I have collages of autumn leaves, carefully sewn together and framed and I will also be making Christmas baubles out of fallen Ginkgo leaves. I love experimenting with autumn finery, just as much as I did during my childhood years.

Thomas Broom Hughes will be taking this love of natural ornamentation and creating beautiful autumn wreaths to commend the changing season. To make the most of your gatherings, join our Autumn Wreath Making workshop on Thursday 20th October. The workshop will be a demonstration as well as a source of inspiration in which you take home home your own beautiful autumn wreath, made using woodland materials. Click here for more information and to reserve you place.

In your own garden, there should still be a great bounty of colour and foliage and using it to create a wreath - or autumn floral arrangement - is just one more way to appreciate what is growing in your garden and what you gather on countryside wanderings. If what you see in your plot is a little lacklustre, then make plans to liven things up next year, adding late-performing plants for colour, texture and form, with long-lasting seedheads that will catch the slanting sun and frosts to come.

October, far from being the end of the gardening year, signals the start for many activities. Here is some advice for your autumn garden:

• The soil is still warm and moist and plants will quickly establish new roots before the colder weather puts them to sleep. Plant evergreen shrubs and roses, perennials and hardy annuals now.
• Plant Spring bulbs in drifts or dot them through borders. Naturalise them in grass or create stunning container displays with tulips, narcissus, alliums, crocus, iris, snowdrops and hyacinths - there is such a choice.
• Towards the end of the month (or earlier if there are frosts in your area), lift Dahlia tubers, Begonia tubers and Gladioli corms to store, dry, indoors over the winter. In milder areas, a deep mulch may be sufficient to protect Dahlias left in the ground.
• Plant Spring bedding, such as wallflowers - these make superb partners for your bulbs.
• Lift and divide overcrowded perennials, cutting away the 'dead' heart of the root system and replanting the divisions.
• Prune rambling roses and tie in wayward canes of Climbing roses too, so that the Autumn winds can't damage the plant or their supports. Join our rose pruning workshop on Tuesday 25th October to learn more. For more information and to reserve your place, click here.
• Direct sow hardy winter peas and broad beans for cropping next year.'

For more advice or information, please visit us or contact a member of our Green Team at: greenteam@petershamnurseries.com.

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