Jobs to do………in October
- Save money by saving vegetable seeds
- Continue water winter crops
- Remove dead leaves from winter brassicas
- This is the best month to turn the contents of the compost bin and cover for winter. You can still add spent crops during this month.
- Collect leaves and add to the leaf mould heap. They will need at least 12-18 months to rot down before they can be used effectively.
- Start a new compost heap if necessary using the stalks of sweet corn plants as a base. Criss cross them on the bottom of the heap to allow air to flow through the heap.
- Use this time to regularly check over crops that you have stored from previous months, to ensure that they will last you through the winter months.
- Remove the remaining tomatoes plants and hang these upside down to continue ripening.
- Try and apply some sort of protection to the soil over winter if you can.
- Autumn is also the best time to lime your soil. Only apply lime to where you plan to grow brassica family crops next year. Never lime soil before growing potatoes.
- Protect cauliflowers by bending their leaves over the heads
- Take hard wood cuttings from fruit bushes
- Prepare the ground for new fruit trees
- Cut back asparagus and globe artichokes
- Gather and store the remaining apples and pears
- Lift and store turnips
- Take root cuttings of mint plants
- Lift main crop potatoes
- Prepare trenches for next spring by digging a spade wide and deep trench and adding kitchen waste. Cover with soil when it reaches the top of the trench. This is ideal for rich soil loving plants like peas, beans and pumpkins
- Self blanching celery types may need covering as they are less hardy. They can also be harvested at this point.
- Harvest runner beans, carrots, beetroot, pumpkins and winter squashes.
- Prune black currants, red currants and gooseberries.
- As the ground becomes vacant, a good spread of manure should be applied. You can leave this on the top of the surface of the soil as the worms and the winter frosts will help to break it down ready for the spring.
- Give the greenhouse a good clean. Store away any remaining pots to make space for any crops that you plan on growing through the winter months. Remember though, to insulate or heat if necessary to protect from the harsh winter weather.
What to sow………Indoors
What to sow………Outdoors
- Green manures on bare ground
- Broad beans
- Hardy peas
- Winter lettuces
- Hardy salads
- Hardy radish
- Autumn onion sets
What to plant………in October
- Spring cabbages
- Winter salad crops can be planted now but it is best to cover them with some sort of cloche.
- Plant rhubarb sets in October. You can divide existing rhubarb plants at this time too so it may be worth asking your allotment neighbour for a plant if you don’t have one.
- Spring flowering bulbs can be planted now so that the remaining warmer weather can help to establish a good root system.
Crops in season now