1. Deadhead potted plants: Keep your potted plants looking great longer. By dead heading your plants it will promote growth in the healthy part of the plant keeping them blooming longer. Simply snap off the bulb leaving the stem behind.
2. Clean the greenhouse: Now is the perfect time to sort the greenhouse out. Remove any dead or diseased plants to ensure what is in there won’t be affected. Clean the greenhouse thoroughly to allow as much light as possible in and remove any summer glass tinting. To help make the greenhouse warmer throughout the cooler months add bubble wrap around the windows to help insulate it and keep the heat in.
3. Insulate outside pipes and taps: Insulate any outside pipes and taps to prevent cracking and water leaking. If you are unlikely to need water from your outside tap in the winter you should turn the water off at the mains.
4. Collect leaves as they fall: Too many leaves on your lawn can suffocate your grass. Grass needs light to photosynthesis to produce food. Without sunlight for long periods the grass will die. Dried leaves are a brilliant way to fertilise your garden. Shred them and use them as leaf mould or as one of the layers in your compost bin. Collecting fallen leaves is easy. You can either use a garden rake or a garden vacuum. One benefit of a garden vacuum is that it will shred the leaves as it collects them to save you yet another garden task. An affordable garden vacuum that does just that is the Flymo GardenVac 2700.
5. Begin a compost bin: September is a great time to begin a compost bin. There is plenty of organic material available in your garden for you to use, and the temperature is ideal. Not too hot and not too cold.
6. Leave out bird seed: Food starts to become difficult to come by for many animals as the winter begins. Leave bird seed out on bird tables and ensure water baths have plenty of fresh water. You can cut up and leave out any fallen fruit for other larger animals that maybe in the area. This is a great way to avoid wasting food.
7. Bring irrigation systems in: If you use automatic sprinkler systems to water your garden throughout the summer you will need bring them inside. If you leave them out in the garden they run the risk of being damaged by frost during the winter and need replacing next year.
8. Harvest crops: It's the time of year where many crops are ready to be collected. Onions, cabbage and sweetcorn are just some examples. Gather them in as soon as they are ready to prevent them being eaten by pest or rotting. Vegetables are easily stored in the freezer. The quicker you get them in after picking, the more nutrients you retain.
9. Fertilise the lawn: This is possibly the last chance you may get to fertilise your lawn this year. Look to buy a slow releasing fertiliser to help your grass grow throughout the winter. If you have used weed or moss killer recently check to see whether they contained nitrogen, many do and adding additional fertiliser may actually damage your lawn rather than helping it.
10. Bring garden furniture inside: The wind, rain and frost can damage even the most durable garden furniture. Consider bringing it inside to avoid it getting damaged and only get it out when you are going to use it.
11. Clean / buy water butts: Collecting fresh water as it rains is a brilliant way to save money and ensure you always have enough water for your garden. During the summer you needed to make sure that you always had water, but now that it rains more frequently you can empty your water butt safe in the knowledge that it is likely to be full again in a few days or weeks. Clean it thoroughly and ensure that no algae is growing inside that may harm any plants that you water.
12. Aerate the lawn: Aerating your lawn is probably the single most beneficial activity you can do to promote healthy grass growth. This allows water and oxygen reach the grass roots promoting healthy grass growth. You can do this with a garden fork, or the easier way by using a lawn scarifier. The Flymo Lawnrake Compact 3400 is a brilliant garden tool designed for just this and can be purchased at the Official Flymo Webshop.
13. Add grass seed to bare patches: The weather conditions are perfect for growing new grass. The soil is moist and the temperature is just right to promote grass growth. Sprinkle grass seed over any areas of your lawn that have become bare over the summer for a better looking lawn next spring. You should also consider adding grass seed on the rest of the lawn. This process is known as over seeding and helps prevent moss and weeds from growing in your lawn.
14. Remove moss and thatch: Scarify your lawn and remove any moss and excessive thatch. Before scarifying use moss killer on any patches of moss and wait for it to die to avoid spreading it. By removing excess thatch it will allow sunlight to reach new grass promoting healthy grass growth. It is recommended that you cut your lawn 7 to 14 days before scarification to cut through thick patches of thatch making scarifying easier. You can scarify your lawn using a garden rake; however one tool that makes scarification easier is an electric lawn raker like the Flymo Lawnrake Compact 3400. It also has adjustable scarifying heights allowing you to adjust the raking height to collect fallen leaves.
15. Remove all summer fruit from branches: There is plenty of summer fruit still on the branches on many trees. Collect this fruit before it spoils. Not only is it delicious, but it can be made into many different tasty treats like jams and crumbles. If you have too much to use, you can freeze it easily and use it when you need it.