March late Summer and the start of the early Autumn season is a time of harvest and preparation for Winter crops. Apples and pears are at their very best and nothing can compare with the flavour of tree ripened fruit. There is still plenty of colour in the flower garden, to keep the flowers in bloom remove the spent flowers and cut back excess growth. Keep gardens weed free as this reduces pest and disease on our plants and the seeds from dropping on the ground to grow next year.

Dahlias and chrysanthemums are in full bloom now. There are a number of flower shows coming up which show these blooms at their very best and are well worth a look. The days are getting shorter but can still be very warm so watering should be maintained to keep plants growing well. I like to do this in the morning so that plants are dry at night and fungus diseases are not encouraged.

Lawns

  1. Mow lawns each week but not too low.
  2. Feed and weed type fertilisers can now be applied.
  3. De thatching of lawns before Winter can begin.
  4. New lawns may now be sown so that they are established before Winter.
  5. Look out for fungus diseases in grass and treat if needed.

Flower Garden

  1. Cut back spent flower heads on perennials and lilies.
  2. Tie up taller growing plants like chrysanthemums and asters before they get too tall and full over.
  3. Remove Summer flowering annuals as they finish flowering to make way for Winter/Spring flowering annuals.
  4. As the weather cools Spring bulbs should be planted in the ground or in pots.
  5. Cuttings of geraniums and fuchsias taken now will give good plants next Spring for planting out.
  6. Plant pansies, primulas, polyanthus, poppies and violas now for good Winter displays.

Fruit & Vegetable Garden

  1. Plant Winter brassicas.
  2. Feed leeks and keep well watered.
  3. Spray stone fruit trees for leaf curl with copper sprays and prune.
  4. Feed and keep well watered citrus trees to ensure good size fruit that is juicy.
  5. Pick apples when ripe. Good firm fruit can be stored by wrapping in tissue paper placed in a box and stored in a cool dark place.
  6. Remove lower leaves from tomatoes to help ripening.
  7. Sow green crops on unused ground to improve soil for next seasons crops.