Monday, 13th July 2020
GARDEN Article

This Month's Magazine
Autumn in the Garden

Autumn in the Garden

Now that summer is more of less over and all of the visitors have left, it’s time to do those jobs to ensure that your garden is going to look its fabulous best again next year.

Autumn is an ideal time to get a big head start on next year's growing season! It's a fact that autumn planting gets perennial flowers, shrubs and trees off to a faster, more vigorous start the following spring. Let's look at the factors that make autumn such a good time to plant:

  • Autumn planted perennials bloom more profusely the following spring.
  • Autumn planted perennials develop much large and more established root systems. This helps them to survive difficult climate conditions like extreme heat.
  • Plants transplanted in autumn take off much more quickly than if the same size plant is transplanted in spring.
  • Autumn planting and transplanting require less water. As the plants go dormant they require less frequent irrigation. This is particularly valuable for all of us here on the Costa where water is a precious resource.
  • Autumn is a great time for planting in areas with a mild winter and hot summer climate. 


Why Prune?
It’s a very good question and the answer is to ensure that your perennials, shrubs and tress look beautiful again next year and not just to clear some of the growth of your plants, although in many cases that too is necessary. The reasons that we prune are:-

  1. to encourage new growth 
  2. to direct new growth 
  3. to fix existing growth problems 
  4. to prevent future growth problems

Whatever the reason for pruning it's important to understand the growth habits of each plant. You also need to determine what you want the plant to do before making any cuts.
Generally, most pruning is done in autumn or late winter when plants are dormant and not in a growth stage. The plants are not using their energy to grow at this time and they are best able to recover.

A spring prune is the time to correct any damage that may have occurred during the winter months. But be very careful as a late spring prune is the worst time to heavily cut a deciduous plant--when it's leafed out and developing new shoots. Pruning a plant when its energy is directed toward growth can shock a plant enough to cause it to dieback.
Early summer is the time to prune spring blooming shrubs so that the shrub will have time to develop new growth which provides the buds which will bloom the following spring.

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