Welcome to the English Garden newsletter from Bellaonline.com
Autumn seems to be on its way here in Gloucestershire. The trees are just starting to get a tinge of yellow and orange. Autumn always makes me think of spring!
So if you haven't got your seed catalogues yet then send for them soon so you can plan for next year.
Think about perennials and annuals.
Lots of bright jewel-like flowers such as poppies, cornflowers, hollyhocks and Love-in-a-mist for instance.
It has very windy here for the past couple of days.
This has meant all those last plums that we couldn’t reach have fallen and the acorns and beech mast are littering the floor.
My pigs love plums and acorns – as do the goats. But it got me thinking about compost!
As the leaves start to fall it seems a shame to waste them and homemade leaf mould makes such a great compost for the garden.
You can make a small amount in a black plastic sack or a large amount in a compost heap depending on your circumstances.
So if you are busy sweeping up leaves look upon them as free excellent compost for your garden. For small amounts of leaves Sweep up your leaves and pop them in your bag – you can do this over several days or weeks.
First you need some black plastic waste bin liners
Next make some small holes in the bottom of the bin liners – taking care you don’t make them too big (or cut yourself) – a small sharp object such as a knitting needle or skewer is fine.
When the bag is full add three pints of water and allow it to drain through.
Pack the leaves down tightly and tie bag top Leave your bag/s in a corner somewhere out of the way for a year.
Make sure they are somewhere safe – not anywhere a friend/partner won’t think - oh rubbish - and put them out with the trash!
When you open them you will have an excellent mulch to put round your prize perennials. You can also use it to enrich your soil if you dig it in.
I much prefer to use it as a mulch one year and then it seeps into the soil without me having to dig it in!
For small amounts of leaves
Sweep up your leaves and pop them in your bag – you can do this over several days or weeks.
Other leaf mould tips
You can add some grass cuttings to your leaves – add a good thick layer of leaves then a thin layer of grass cuttings then repeat twice.
If you have a shredder then you can shred the leaves before putting them in the bags – this will speed up the whole process.Check out the English Garden site to find out which leaves are the best to use.
On another topic there is still time to plant daffodils and tulips for next year but really they should be planted in the next month or before the first frosts.
To get the best results buy as high-quality bulbs as you can afford, make sure they have no bruises or soft spots or mould on them.
They like a sunny spot and well drained soil.
Remember that daffodils should be planted with the pointed end up at least 6 inches deep and if you can 8 inches.
Don't forget to leave them room to grow and multiply so leave at least 3-5 inches between bulbs. They will flower year after year for you.
Here's the latest article from the English Garden site at BellaOnline.com.
A traditional old English cottage garden favourite. http://www.bellaonline.com/articles/art46100.asp
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