With the evenings drawing in, and a newfound crispness in the morning air, love it or hate it, summer is over. While the backend stretch of the year may seem like all doom and gloom until spring resurfaces, autumn gardening can often leave us with plenty of hope and prosperity for our gardens and allotments throughout the colder months.
As always from us here at EvenGreener, we acknowledge the need to support and encourage blossoming the local wildlife in your outdoor space, not only to provide food and shelter for your current ecosystem, but to gear up your garden to attract a thriving hub of nature for this autumn and beyond.
Supporting your local wildlife connects with the duties of autumn gardening, whether you’re providing homes and cover for beetles, hedgehogs, and frogs, or planting nectar-rich bulbs in preparation for feeding next year’s bees. To help you along the way, here’s our top 10 tips to get the best out of your autumn gardening.
1. Keep your garden borders intact
More and more professional gardeners these days are supporting rugged wilderness and a lazy, overgrown garden. We’re behind the fashion, so don’t worry about letting your perennials grow out, as they often have attractive seedheads which pose as beneficial to feeding and attracting your garden’s local wildlife. Leaving at least one border intact where seedheads can flourish, can provide food and shelter for birds, whilst fallen stems can additionally stack up to create shelter for insects, amphibians, and all sorts of other small animals in your garden.
2. Spruce up your lawn
Grass can be very resilient in its defence against draughts, as some of you may have witnessed this summer upon the greenery of your lawn suddenly reappearing once the rain finally fell again. However, there’s certainly no harm in building up its defence for the future. Improving drainage and aeration throughout your lawn can be done through making deep holes with the prongs of a garden fork to increase your garden’s storage of water. Autumn is a great time for this, as the ground has started to soften.
Removing thatch and moss can be another smart move for your autumn gardening checklist, which can be collected via a garden rake, and then added to your compost bin or pile to ensure nothing goes to waste! Have a browse of our award winning composters here to see how you can transform all your garden and organic waste into nutrient-rich compost to feed and enhance your garden throughout autumn.
3. Plant some evergreens
The warm (ish) soil and cooler air temperature makes autumn the perfect time to fill gaps in your borders with evergreens such as daphne, camellias, and sarcococca. They’re beautifully fragrant, and have a deep, rich green colour to add some exuberance to your garden all the way through winter. Consider planting in shady, or dry spots, or by a path or doorway to get a whiff of their smell to brighten up your day. Keep your garden looking EvenGreener today.
4. Promote wildlife in your autumn gardening
As we mentioned, it’s important to keep our local wildlife safe and happy through the colder months as they search for food and shelter for their hibernation. This can be done by simply letting nature take its course. Avoid disturbing potential homes and shelters, such as leaf piles, and compost heaps, as hedgehogs, amphibians, and other little mammals could use or gather this for their homes for the winter. So, make your autumn gardening easy and stress-free this season and simply, do a little less!
5. Tidy up the old crops
Old and spent plants and crops can often start to rot, and become host to an array of diseases, attracting pests in the process. To negate the likelihood of this, simply cut the plants from their root, and if they’re not diseased, throw them in your compost bin or pile to make further use of them. A good tip for chopping beans and peas off is to do it at ground level, to leave their nitrogen-fixing roots open in the soil to feed next year’s crops.
6. Plant a tree
If your garden has the space available, planting your own tree can be the perfect solution for capturing and storing carbon from the atmosphere, whilst accommodating for a whole new array of wildlife too. Paperbank maple can be a great choice for any garden looking to home a small tree through all seasons, which is best to be planted between September and November. The copper-coloured bark can glisten in the winter sun on a clear day and make for a fantastic spectacle in your garden.
The Tibetan cherry tree is another contender we recommend putting on your autumn gardening “to-plant” list. Small in size, the tree has a smooth, glossy copper finish, which can also create a dramatic addition to your garden on a sunny day. It can be planted during the autumn in a sunny spot in your garden, and suits a variety of types of soil.
7. Install a water butt
With the wetter months approaching, now is the perfect time (if you’ve not already) to install a water butt in your garden. After the draught in the summer, we should all acknowledge the importance of storing and conserving water to minimise wastage. Rain water is perfectly suited to hydrate your garden with too, as it’s much softer than tap water, which has chemical and salty properties that can be harmful for your plants.
You’re in the right place if you fancy installing a water saving system, as our range varies in shapes, sizes, and colours to accommodate for all homes and gardens. Shop here to find the perfect addition to your autumn gardening.
8. Make use of seasonal crops
The transition in seasons we have in September/October can often leave our gardens in their most prosperous phase of the year. Summer crops, such as tomatoes, courgettes, cucumbers, and runner beans are still highly productive, whilst the more autumnal crops of apples, pears, leeks, and squash are approaching their time to start harvesting.
9. Add some colour
The (likely) dull weather approaching doesn’t have to leave your garden looking the same. Plants such as Heavenly bamboo can add colour all year-round to your garden. Its leaves are yellow-green during the summer months, before turning a bright red once the weather cools down.
Similarly, long-lasting displays such as Ornamental cabbages will bring bright sparks and displays for your garden in a vast array of colours, shapes, and sizes. Their colours also change as the weather cools, creating an ever-changing attraction in your garden.
Berries such as pyracantha and cotoneaster can also add a tinge of colour into your outdoor space, in deep red and vibrant orange, whilst additionally helping birds feed during the winter months to provide for your local ecosystem.
10. Plant bulbs in prep for spring
Autumn is the perfect time for planting bulbs due to the soft, moist soil. Bulbs grow roots throughout the wetter months, needing little water, which makes them perfect for gardens with little access to water. We recommend planting daffodils in September/October in shadier spots in your garden, and then tulips in the sunnier sections through to mid-November in preparation for a stunning display come spring.
So, there’s our top 10 autumn gardening tips to help you work alongside nature this year and get the best for your garden through the colder months. Browse our composting, water saving, and recycling range here to make your gardening as easy, accessible, and affordable as possible. Start living EvenGreener today.