The Autumn garden tidy up is well underway this month, bean canes are coming down, leaves are being collected to make leaf mould, herbs such as mint are being potted up and brought indoors for use over winter. I like to get the tidying up done now but I keep wildlife in mind, making sure I leave enough ‘messy’ areas for hibernating creatures.
There’s a definite nip in the air although most days are still very mild for the time of year, night-time temperatures are slowly plummeting and beautiful star-filled skies suggest frosts are on the horizon – some areas may have experienced a few already. These first frosts will almost certainly finish off tender vegetables such as courgettes, keep an eye on the weather forecast and harvest anything tender as necessary, cover with fleece or cloches if you prefer. Hardy broad beans such as Aquadulce Claudia can be sown from this month onwards, garlic can be planted now but I tend to wait until next month and plant again in December, weather permitting. Digging over the soil at this time of year allows essential air back in and frost to break up compacted soil, killing off pests too.
I’ve been pulling baby carrots this month thanks to a spur of the moment late summer sowing, I watched Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall discussing the gorgeous flavour of baby carrots during an episode of River Cottage Veg Every Day – a great incentive to sow them late next year. I just hope the weather is kind again.
I would like to wish you all a very happy Halloween, or Samhain blessings. Enjoy your October garden.