September gardening jobs: part 1


Hi everyone,

With autumn starting to make itself felt, September sees the beginning of lots of change in your garden. Stay on top of things with my key gardening jobs for September…

Sow seeds now for colour next year
The cheapest way to pack your garden with colour next year is to grow hardy annuals like pot marigolds, larkspur and love-in-a-mist. If you sow the seeds now in a sunny spot outdoors, they’ll start flowering extra early next summer.

Dig up potatoes
Lift the last of your potatoes before the slugs get to them. Dig them up on a sunny morning, leave them on the soil to dry out completely during the day then store in paper bags in a cool shed or garage.

Trim your hedges
Privet and lonicera hedges need a final trim of the year to get them tidy for winter. It’s also the last opportunity to cut evergreen hedges like leylands, yew and laurel. 


Bring in houseplants
If you put any houseplants outside for the summer, it’s time to bring them back inside. Trim off any damaged or yellowing leaves and check for pests, especially slugs which may be lurking in the drainage holes. If you spot any pests, spray with Plant Invigorator before you bring your plants indoors.

Keep your summer pots looking good
To get the most from your summer pots for as long as possible, keep them well watered and feed them twice a week with a high potash feed like Flower Power. Also, take off any finished flowers to stop the plants from going to seed.

Grow your own garlic
Home-grown garlic is much milder, tastier and fresher than the supermarket’s. For best results, get a pack of special cloves from the garden centre and plant them in well-drained soil. Harvest them from mid-summer.


  1. Keith Vallance. 1 Ayliffe house, St Peters Road, South ham, Basingstoke Hants RG22 6TQ September 18, 2011 at 10:02 am -  Reply

    Hi Richard
    I would like your advice on my pollen free Oriental double lily bulbs that I received from QVC in february. I planted 4 bulbs per tub & have had a wonderful show of scented flowers throughout the summer. However the flowers have now faded & all I am left with are the stems & leaves, what i would like to know is (1) should i continue to feed the bulbs with your Flower power (which I swear by). (2) should I cut the stems back if so by how much. (3) do I leave the bulbs to over winter in the tubs outside or do I lift them. Your guidance would be very much appreciated, I watch & record your programmes as they are of a great help & guidance to us amateur gardeners with the hints & tips you give us, please keep up the good & invaluable work you do on QVC.
    I look forward to your reply with anticipation.
    Best wishes
    Keith Vallance (Basingstoke)

  2. Valerie Peters May 24, 2013 at 5:21 pm -  Reply

    I have just received Slug & Snail control.
    When you advertised, you said this item was totally safe to use with no adverse effect on children,birds & pets and even showed a promo film.
    The box does not say Safe for anything, but use with instructions provided. i.e: To avoid risk to man comply with instructions, the children&pets say the same. ALL weed/slug killers,give similar warnings. Not Good Enough Richard!!

  3. Richard Jackson May 29, 2013 at 10:55 am -  Reply

    Thanks for getting in touch about this. I’d like to reassure you that it is totally safe for pets, wildlife and children . By law, all plant protection products have to include this statutory wording on their packaging. My slug and snail control is based on naturally occurring ferric phosphate, is approved for organic gardening and can be used around edible plants the royal horticultural society say that ferric phosphate pellets are their product of choice when selecting slug pellets and Which? Gardening recommend them as the pet and wildlife safe way to control slugs and snails. I’m sorry if the official wording worried you but rest assured they are safe.

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