Whether you’re harvesting the last of your summer vegetables, tidying up your borders or planting spring bulbs, there’s plenty to do in the garden in November. Make the most of those clear autumn days with our top 15 November garden jobs.
15 garden tips for November
November is the best month to plant tulip bulbs in pots and borders. There’s still time to plant other spring bulbs like daffodils, crocuses, irises and fritillaries too.
Sow broad beans in the ground or pots, and sow salad leaves on sunny windowsills for winter picking.
Carrots, cabbage and celeriac can all be harvested now. Harvest parsnips after the first frosts, when they will have a sweeter flavour.
Net brassicas like cabbage against pigeons, and stake Brussels sprouts to keep them standing securely, ready for harvesting at Christmas.
Lift dahlias after the first frosts have blackened the foliage. Leave them somewhere cool to dry, then store them in trays, covered with a layer of newspaper or dry compost to stop the tubers drying out. You can do the same for cannas and tuberous begonias.
Clear fallen leaves from lawns and beds.
Mulch beds with compost or well-rotted farmyard manure to improve the soil structure. Put down planks to work off, to avoid compacting the soil.
Put pots on pot feet to stop them getting waterlogged. In cold areas, wrap pots with fleece or bubble wrap to insulate them against frost damage.
Prune roses by a third to prevent wind rock.
Keep cutting back faded perennials, but leave some seed heads for the birds and to provide winter interest in the borders.
Cut old hellebore leaves off at ground level. This reduces the spread of hellebore leaf spot and also makes the winter flowers easier to see.
November’s a good time to prune apple and pear trees (but leave plum trees alone until midsummer). Prune blackcurrants, redcurrants, whitecurrants and gooseberries now too, removing deadwood and thinning out congested branches to achieve an open goblet shape. Prune autumn-fruiting raspberries, cutting all the old canes to ground level.
Leave ivy over winter, as the flowers and berries are a valuable food source for both birds and bees. It also provides shelter for overwintering ladybirds and butterflies. Don’t worry about it getting out of control, as you can cut it back in spring.
Clean your bird feeders and fill them up. Oil-rich, high energy foods like suet balls, peanuts and sunflower hearts will help birds get through the winter. Keep birdbaths topped up too.
Aerate your lawn by spiking it with a garden fork or a hollow tine aerator. Cut the lawn on a high setting to see it through winter.
Whether you’re pruning trees, planting spring bulbs or planning next year’s vegetable garden, you’ll find everything you need in our centre, so come and visit us soon.