Gardening times

SEPTEMBER is a good month to enjoy the hard work of spring and summer, although our flower beds could be starting to lose some vigour it is a time to enjoy the harvest from the veg plot.

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By our standard, we have experienced another excellent summer this year and west central Scotland has enjoyed a relatively drier period than previous years.

A return to drier conditions is welcomed by us all but can change the approach we would have in the garden.

Plants that require fertile, moisture retentive soils will perhaps have struggled a little this year unless you have been attentive and kept the hose running for these plants.

Lavender is a plant that has enjoyed the long dry summer along with Phlomis and Sage have also enjoyed a better year this year.

It is therefore important not to go out just yet and start to purchase Mediterranean origin plants.

It is important to note plants that enjoy nice hot dry periods often don't like our long wet mild spells that can be characteristic of our autumn and winter, especially last winter when we experienced very few frosts that penetrated in to the soil.

Hopefully the drier conditions through the summer months will continue and allow bulbs to overwinter in good soil conditions and not rot in the ground due to wet moist soils.

If you are looking to renew plants choose varieties that can withstand drought conditions and always make sure you plant them in their favoured position.

As we begin to experience shorter light hours we should begin to think about preparing our garden for the autumn and winter that is ahead.

September hails a goodbye to summer and the onset of autumn. Some changes in leaf colour have already been reported due to the drier summer we have experienced. Make sure any leaves that do fall are cleared away so that areas of lawn are not smothered.

Aerating the lawn in September will help drainage and allow the soil to prepare itself for next year.

Spring flowering bulbs - September is a good month to plan your garden for next year, if planting new bulbs then look towards September as a time to plan, purchase and plant your new bulbs.

It is a good time to check on your main crop potatoes and they should be ready for lifting now or anytime soon to over winter. These potatoes should be stored in a dark, frost free area.

Home and Garden

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