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autumn gardening jobs

Gardening Jobs to do in Autumn

Now that autumn is here, its time to think about the gardening jobs you can do to get your garden prepared for winter and the following spring. In autumn its all about tidying. This is so your garden will look neat and tidy throughout winter and so that you get the head start you want for spring.


Before the cold weather starts to set in the first job to do in autumn is clearing your lawn of any fallen leaves. Not only does it help to make your lawn look good, but it also allows all the air and nutrients to get to your lawn. Leaves can form a layer that blocks water, air flow and nutrients from getting down to the root system. If the leaves are matted down they can even keep new blades of grass from emerging next spring. We recommend using a spring tine rake such as our Stainless Steel Lawn & Leaf Rake.

kent & stowe lawn rake in use - Jobs to do in Autumn

The Kent & Stowe 3 in 1 Rake is also great for clearing leaves in large areas with its wide head. You can detach one head which is ideal for clearing leaves in tight spaces like beds and borders. Finally, you can also detach both heads and use them as leaf grabbers for picking up the leaves.

3 in 1 rake wide areas

Another autumn gardening job is to mow your lawn for the final time. Ensure you set your mower blades higher than you have been using in summer to leave your grass slightly longer for winter. Trim all of the edges to leave them neat and tidy using a lawn edging tool and lawn shears for the perfect finish.

Late autumn, when grass stops growing, is the perfect time to give lawnmowers a thorough clean before packing them away for winter. However, with milder winters becoming more common due to climate change, an occasional mow with the blades set high may be needed later in the season. Never mow lawns when they’re waterlogged or frozen – wait until more favourable conditions arrive.

Feeding a lawn in autumn will help turf withstand the ravages of winter in tip-top condition. Use a specially formulated autumn lawn feed that’ll keep grass strong and healthy over the chilly months.

Sowing a new lawn

Sowing a new lawn from seed is cheap, and grass seed germinates quickly in autumn. Careful soil preparation is essential: remove perennial weeds then dig the site over, incorporating well-rotted organic matter. Leave to settle for a week or two then remove any further weeds that appear. Before sowing, tread the area over in multiple directions before raking the seed bed level and removing large stones. Sow grass seed evenly at the rate directed on the box then lightly rake seeds into the soil. Keep new lawns well-watered if conditions are dry and avoid walking on new grass for at least a month. Read our article to find our more on how to sow a new lawn.

Beds & Borders

It is also worth tidying your beds and borders. Remove any dying leaves and collapsed stems from perennials with secateurs. Then remove any weeds in borders with a long handled hoe and in your beds with a hand hoe.  Finally cover your beds and borders with manure to help insulate plant roots.

kent & stowe oscillating hoe in use - autumn gardening

Autumn gardening should also mean you put away any plant supports you have used in summer. Cut down annual climbers and remove any dead stems and foliage from the supports. Wash off any soil and treat them to store over winter. If you find that you require new supports ensure you select the best ones for the type of plants you would like to support or a simple bamboo cane.

Pruning in Autumn

Clear away any of your spent plants to ensure they do not host pest and disease. Continue to deadhead any flowering plants, especially roses with a sharp pair of secateurs as they can continue to bloom for another month or two.


Eversharp™ All Purpose Lite secateurs lifestyle

As flowering stems of perennials such as delphinium, crocosmia and peony die back, cut unsightly growth down to ground level. However, certain herbaceous perennials such as penstemons and salvias need the protection of this year’s growth to keep them safe from frost, so use sharp secateurs or shears to just remove the dead flowers and top growth for now. Leave attractive standing stems and seed heads in situ for winter interest and wildlife.

Planting Bulbs

Planting spring and summer-flowering bulbs will ensure that your garden is a riot of colour next season. All you need to do is get bulbs into the ground ahead of winter, then sit back and wait patiently for a floral extravaganza.

For brilliant displays of cheerful daffodils that come back year-after-year, choose the fattest bulbs and make sure they’re firm, with no signs of decay. Bulbs thrive in moisture-retentive, well-drained soil, ideally in a sunny position. Daffodils prefer to be planted early in autumn, so get bulbs into the ground without delay.

westland bulb planting compost in use autumn gardening

October is also the last chance to get spring-flowering crocus bulbs into the ground, along with alliums, many of which begin to bloom from Chelsea Flower Show time in May. Bulbs of summer-flowering favourites such as crocosmia and lilies can also go into the ground in October. If you’re pressed for time, winter aconites, hyacinths and snowdrops can still be planted in November.

Planting trees, shrubs and perennials

Our changing UK climate means increasingly the best time to plant trees, shrubs and perennials is during autumn and winter when it is cool and moist. Springs can be dry and warm; establishing new plants at this time can be harder work than in autumn. When planting trees, shrubs or perennials, add a sprinkle of fish, blood and bone to the planting hole: this contains nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium which will help ensure good root growth. Alternatively add Growmore a balanced fertilizer.

fish, blood and bone 10kg in soil autumn gardening

Autumn Tree Care

Another autumn gardening job is to take care of your trees. Use a Winter Tree Wash on all fruit trees and bushes as this will help protect the tree from overwintering moths and insects. It is also a good time to water trees before the cold months arrive. This ensures they are kept well hydrated over the winter. Make sure you give them a prune too as this helps to relieve stress and allows them to keep growing.

Kent & Stowe Telescopic Tree Lopper 3m in use autumn gardening

Finally, don’t forget to purchase your winter bedding plants early and plant them up so they are well bed in before winter arrives.

To buy any of our tools or products online click here.

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