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More tips from Rod Hill

Corfe Mullen Gardening Club  November / December 2014

Well it’s that time of year when the clocks have gone back, daylight is not so plentiful the sap is going down and I could very well suffer with this S.A.D. syndrome.

But there is still much to do. I have a scruffy part of the garden where I have blown all the leaves alongside of a fence under the trees and they are going to stay there for the winter to give protection and hibernation to any of the creatures that might be looking for a warm home when the temperature drops and I hope they will do their job in keeping the slug population down,later on.

I have noticed that one or two shrubs have outgrown there space, so I have had to move them and give them more room . Some shrubs that are coming into bud such as Camellias are best left alone unless they are small in size and have a good root ball.

Perennial plants can be divided now if the weather is still warm. I do love the different colours of the Heuchera's and enjoy splitting them up and planting them around the garden to grow on in their own time.

Of course, at this time of year we must be careful not to move things around when the ground is waterlogged or frozen and keep an eye on the pots which might get damaged by frost.

If you have any tender shrubs, such as Arbutus or Fuchsia's they may need to go into the greenhouse over winter for some protection. Hardy Fuchsias can be reduced to about 12" from now until March after the leaves have dropped.

My Dahlia's will soon be going over and when they start to turn black or a couple of weeks after a frost I cut off the greenery just below soil level. If they have been in for three or four years they could be lifted, dried and divide up for next year, otherwise cover them with a mulch.

A good thick mulch around the garden can be of benefit over the winter.

Looking at my lawns they will soon be wanting another cut before Christmas when the grass is drier. A Bison Brush is good to get the dew off the lawn before cutting, I must also make sure that the blades are high.

If your lawn is on poor soil and not looking too good, why not empty a grow bag over, brush it in and let the worms take it down over winter.

What a good time of year to go out into the garden and marvel at the beautiful, intricate work of the cob webs.

From Rodders, the retired gardener.

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