Firstly – if you haven’t already, turn off your sprinklers and save our precious water.
Most weeds are annual plants which means that they have a short life cycle – they grow from seeds, flower (creating more seeds) and spread them around. The best thing to do is tackle them before the seeding stage.
Early winter is the time to plant roses, trees, shrubs, hedges, ground covers and winter flowering annuals. Bulbs planted in late autumn-winter will flower in spring and summer and those planted towards the end of winter will provide colour throughout summer.
Our mild climate means transplanting trees and shrubs is best done now. Add plenty of compost to the soil and water in well with Seasol. Fertilise when you see new leaf growth appearing, that way you know the roots are beginning to establish.
Pruning is another winter job for roses, fruit trees, hydrangeas and many perennials. Most deciduous fruit trees should receive their winter prune to cut back last year’s growth by about one third and correct any structural problems; and most flowering plants becoming dormant, so it’s a good time to remove the dead flower heads.
Divide clumping plants (such as agapanthus). This will help to fill the empty spots in the garden without a trip to the garden centre.
You can also use your fallen deciduous leaves to make compost by gathering into a bin or simply leave them where they lay. They will rot quite quickly with winter rains especially if you throw around some nitrogenous fertiliser to help them breakdown.