If you’re growing your own fruit and veg, there’s still plenty to be done as the weather gets colder. It’s the perfect time to get new fruit trees planted for spring and to let tomatoes ripen. Here are some tips from the experts over at Love the Garden on what you need to be doing to make sure you get a bumper crop.
Dig up outdoor tomato plants and hang them upside-down in the greenhouse to allow the fruits to ripen. Or pick the fruit and place them in a drawer or similar place with a banana skin – the ethylene they give off will speed up ripening. Any that don’t ripen can be used to make preserves and green tomato chutney.
Plant out spring cabbages to their final positions if you’ve not had chance to do it yet. Cover them with horticultural fleece or netting to stop the pigeons getting to them.
Finish planting autumn onion sets for a crop in early to mid-summer next year.
Autumn garlic can be planted in mild areas having free-draining soil. Otherwise it can be started in containers or modules, and planted out when more mature.
Radishes, mustard cress, and winter lettuces can be sown and grown in grow bags in a greenhouse or in pots or troughs on a sunny windowsill.
Now’s the perfect time to plant new fruit trees, bushes and canes. Remember to check rootstocks and pollination groups before ordering fruit trees to ensure you have trees that will produce bumper crops and won’t outgrow their allotted space.
Cut down and remove the fruited canes of blackberries and hybrid berries and tie in the new ones.
Lift and pot up or plant out rooted strawberry runners. These will make new plants to fruit for the next five to six years and are useful replacements for old or diseased plants.
Remove and destroy apples, pears and plums affected with brown rot to prevent the disease from spreading. If the mummified fruit is left in the tree it will affect next year’s growth and fruit.
Do not let fallen apple, pear, plum and peach leaves infected with diseases lie on the ground. Garden hygiene is crucial in the control of these common problems.
You might also find these posts useful: