"Traditional & The Unusual"

 Moss House Cottage Garden Plants


Gardener`s Monthly Corner



                                                        August, September & October


August at-a-glance

August is the culmination of months of effort & your garden should be a riot of beautiful colour. make the most of the summery weather - spend more time with your flowers, be creative with home-grown herbs & salads. Look out for butterflies & other sorts of mini-wildlife - even humming-bird hawk moths in a hot summer. And if you fancy a change os scene, it`s a great time to go garden visiting. Happy gardening.

General Garden Tasks

Water & feed plants frequently, particularly those in containers.

Weed the borders regularly.

Deadhead annuals, roses, and other flowering plants.

Cut back perennials after flowering, to encourage a second flush of blooms.

Mow lawn regularly, but don`t water or feed.

Trim pyracantha.

When flowers are over, clip dwarf hedges of lavender & rosemary.

Clip beech. hornbeam ,Leyland hedges late this month or early next month.

Cut & dry everlasting flowers.

Plant autumn flowering bulbs.

Divide bearded irises.

Take cuttings of alpines.

Keep on top of watering & feeding containers.

Harvest french runner beans, lettuce, beetroot, turnips, onions, marrows,

summer squashes, second early potatoes & first outdoor tomatoes.

Sow early carrots, peas, turnips,  baby spinach leaves & spring cabbages.

`stop` outdoor tomatoes.

Cut & dry or freeze herbs.

Prune gooseberries, redcurrant bushes, & summer fruiting  raspberry canes now that all the fruit has been picked.

harvest blackberries, loganberries, peaches, apricots, & the last of the summer raspberries.

Cut strawberry runners from the parent plant.

Ventilate the greenhouse & damp down regularly in hot weather.

Sow winter & spring-flowering pot plants for the greenhouse or conservatory.

Plant specially prepared bulbs, such as hyacinths, for forcing, if you want them in flower for Christmas.

Increase feeding of greenhouse tomatoes, continue pinching out side shoots & remove lower yellow leaves.

Clear out any yellowed or decaying water lily leaves from the pond.

Top up water levels if necessary.

Watch out for

Symptoms of drought.

Powdery mildew on roses & honeysuckles.

Caterpillars on cabbages, cauliflowers & other brassicas.

Blight on potatoes & tomatoes.

Slugs & snails.


Plant in their Prime

Achillea. Agapanthus. Alstromeria. Anthmis. Aster. Astilbe. Astrantia. Campanula. Catananche. Centurea. Clematis. Crocosmia.Dianthus. Echniops. Geum. Helenium. Hemerocalis. Heuchera. lavatera. Leaucanthemum. Liatris. Ligularia.

Lythrum. Monarda. Nepeta. Penstemon. Salvia. veronica. Rudbeckia. Prunella. Scabiosa. Thalictrum.

September at-a-glance

With the summer holidays nearly over, it`s back to work, and the same can be said for the garden. There`s a wistful air about it, as you resume the jobs to keep the summer garden going for as long as possible, although the nip in the air at night reminds you that autumn is in the offering. Not so long ago, September was the end of the season - time to put the garden to bed & get ready for the first frost - but not any more. Mild autumns have elongated the gardening season, so now it`s worth growing plants to keep the garden borders blooming for longer.  Late flowering perennials will slot into the summer borders to give you another month or two of colour & interest.  Happy Gardening.

General garden tasks

Continue to keep watering regularly & feeding.

Cut out flowered stems of perennials to keep the borders looking tidy.

Get the compost going - autumn clearing creates a lot of waste.

Repair broken lawn edges.

make new lawns from seed around the middle of the month, but delay laying turf until October or November.

Plant or move conifers & evergreens

Deadhead roses.

Plant spring bulbs, although tulips should be left for another month or two.

Deadhead & protect dahlias.

Support tall flowers.

Collect seed from perennials & alpines but choose a warm dry day.

Plant winter bedding & spring bulbs in containers.

Move tender plants under cover in cold areas.

Cover late crops of salads with cloches or horticultural fleece.

Sow over wintering onions.

Plant spring cabbage plants.

Leave tomatoes on the plant until the weather turns, then bring them in to ripen.

Cut down asparagus foliage once it turns yellow or buff ( it may occur next month)

pot up herds such as chives, mint, basil, coriander & parsley.

Prune fruit canes.

Reduce the watering & feeding of all greenhouse plants.

Bring in tender plants to over winter in cold areas.

Plant early spring bulbs in pots.

stop feeding & reduce the watering of tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers & melons.

Continue to feed the fish until the weather breaks.

Watch out for

Vine weevil under glass.

Earwigs in dahlias.

Plant in their Prime

Actea. Agapnthus. Alstromeria. Anaphalis. Anemone. Aster.Centurea. Centranthus.Clematis. Chrysanthemum. Dianthus. Eyngium. Helenium. Helianthus. Hemerocalis.  heuchera. Monarda. Nepeta. Penstemon. Persicaria.  Phlox. Rudbeckia. Salvia. Scabiosa. sedum. Gladioli. Nerine. 

October- at-a-glance

I know a lot of people think `oh autumn` and shut the garden shed door until spring, but the year is`nt over yet. October signals the biggest quick-change act in the gardening year - when leaves start to `turn` and the landscape catches fire. We have the usual mists and mellow fruitfulness and the rich tapestry of autumn colours and late flowers to look forward to, when the low, slanting orange sun of an Indian summer is punctuated by refreshing evenings with a nip in the air, and you don`t need a garden the size of a country park to see the wonderful sights. With clever planting of perennials, bulbs, grasses and trees all this can be found in your own garden.  Happy Gardening.

General garden Tasks

Tidy borders lightly, clearing weeds and cutting down flower stems.

Compost all green rubbish generated by clearing the garden.

Make a new lawn by laying turf.

Reduce mowing, and clear piles of dead leaves from the lawn to stop the grass turning yellow.

Carry out autumn lawn care if you haven`t done it yet.

Plant container grown trees, shrubs and climbers.

Plant bare-root plants towards the end of the month.

Check tree ties in windy weather.

Cut back tall shrubs, e.g. lavatera and buddleja to prevent wind rock and damage.

Prune late flowering roses, repeat-flowering roses and old fashioned roses.

Towards the end of the month take hardwood cuttings of roses.

Trim privet hedges.

Remove fallen leaves from the crowns of plants to prevent them rotting.Lift tender perennials and bulbs and bring them indoors.

Plant winter and spring bedding and bulbs in containers.

Containers will need occasional watering.

Protect salads and other late root crops with horticultural fleece.

Cut down asparagus foliage.

Create new strawberry beds.

Pick apples and pears for storing mid month.

Prepare for new fruit trees and plant if conditions allow.

Have a good clear out of the greenhouse and plan for cold weather.

Bring frost tender plants inside for the winter.

Reduce the amount of water given to greenhouse plants at night.

Sow early annuals.

have a pond clear-out: cut down the dead and dying leaves of marginal plants.

Scoop out excess sludge from the bottom of the pond, and cover the pond with netting.

Watch out for

First frosts.

Toadstools and fairy rings in the lawn - brush them off with a broom.

Plant in their Prime

Actaea. Anemone. Aster. Chrysanthemum. Cofia. Lavertera. Lirope. Penstemon.  Sedum. saxifraga. Solidago. Stipa. 

raise the cutting height of the lawn mower blades during hot, dry spells when the grass is under stress to keep it green without watering.

Avoid watering the lawn, except a new lawn in very long, dry spells.

Prune & deadhead roses.

Prune philadelphus & wisteria.

Clip privet & other fast-growing hedges.

Cut lavender for drying.

Deadhead bedding plants, perennials & roses, & cut out flowered stems of perennials such as lupins & delphiniums as they go over.

Divide old clumps of bearded irises & replant.

Cut & dry everlasting flowers.

feed herbaceous perennilas.

Plant autumn flowering bulbs.

Deadhead, feed & water annuals & tender perennials regularly.

Disbud tuberous begonias.

Water, feed & deadhead container plants regularly.

Sow maincrop carrots, early peas, spring cabbage, turnips, lettuce, raddishes, chicory, winter raddishes & spring cabbages.

Keep vegetables well watered in dry spells.

Harvest vegetables as soon as they are ready, although root crops can stay in the ground.

`stop` outdoor tomatoes.

Cut & dry or freeze herbs.

Tidy strawberry beds & grow spare strawberry plants from runners.

Harvest raspberries, redcurrents, blackcurrents & gooseberries.

Thin out fruit.

Keep on top of ventilating the greenhouse, watering & feeding greenhouse plants & apply another layer of shading paint if weather is very hot.

train a standard fuchsia.

Pick summer greenhouse crops regularly.

Provide more oxygen in the pond if necessary by thinning waterweeds or running a fountain.

top up the p;ond when the water level drops due to evaporation in hot weather.

Divide water irises.

Watch out for

Containers drying out.

Cabbage white butterflies laying eggs on brassica plants.

Potato blight on potatoes & tomatoes.

Plants in their prime

Cornus. Cytisus. Escollonia. Hypericum. Phlomis. Vinca. abutilon. Clematis. Acanthus. Achillea. Alstromeria. Anemone. Aruncus. Astilbe. Astrantia. Campanula. Catananche. Centranthus. Crambe. Delphinium. Dianthus. Echinops. Erigeron. Euphorbia. geranium. Geum. Helenium. Hemerocallis. Kniphofia. Lavatera. Liatris. Ligularia. Lysimachia. Lythrum. Monarda. Nepeta. Paeonia. Persicaria. Phlox. Potentilla. Rudbeckia. Salvia. Scabiosa. Stachys. Stipa. Thalictrum. Tiarella. Verbascum. Veronica. Dahlia. lilium & all summer bedding plants.

Please check website for monthly updates

Contact:     Tina Lloyd     01704 550154            Mobile:  07870842093

Email   :      tdps@talktalk.net                           Website:  www.mosshousecottageplants.co.uk

You will also find my plants for sale at Bill Rimmer`s Farm Shop & Tea Rooms, Longacres Farm, Bentams Way,  Southport, PR8 4HX.        Open 7 Days A Week          (Opposite Dobbies Garden World)