Gardening Tips For November

November can actually be quite a busy time in the greenhouse and the garden. By now you should have moved out all of the annuals, bedding and summer cropping plants and moved in anything that needs a little winter protection. Its important to be able to move around within your greenhouse, so dont pack the whole floor area with masses of pots especially if you then need to get to the far corner to tend an ailing plant.

[] Empty out pots of spent plants and wash the pots ready for next season, youll save hours of precious time in the spring and it will help remove any overwintering pests and diseases.

[] Ventilate the greenhouse on warm sunny days, it keeps the air fresh and reduces fungal problems. Be sure to shut it up at night.

[] Pot up rooted cuttings into separate pots of fresh, clean compost.

[] Check overwintering plants regularly and remove dead leaves from any plants to reduce fungal problems later.

[] Top up slug control and check tender plants for aphids and other pests. Seek out the hiding places of snails; just a couple in the greenhouse can wreak havoc.

[] Insulate the greenhouse to provide an extra degree or two of frost protection and keep a sheet of horticultural fleece handy to throw over plants in a severe cold snap.

[] Clean the windows of the glasshouse to let in as much light as possible. Check for cracks and damaged glass and replace and repair.

[] Continue to plant bulbs, especially tulips. Keep some pots in the cold greenhouse for an earlier display of flowers.

[] If you havent already done so, check your greenhouse heater to make sure it is working properly and ready for action when the temperatures fall.

[] Clear out the greenhouse gutters to prevent problems in heavy rainfall.

[] Tidy up under the greenhouse benches and have a general clear out.

[] Reduce watering to a minimum and restrict it to plants that are actively growing.

[] Divide some clumps of chives in the garden and pot them up for growing in the greenhouse where they should continue to produce a few fresh leaves.

[] Plan your seed order for next year and order in plenty of time so that you get exactly what you want.

[] Sow more broad beans for an earlier crop next year and also some green salad leaves over the winter. Sow the whole packet and then sacrifice half to winter salads and grow the rest on for a spring crop of leaves and pods.

Sow some more winter lettuce, salads and oriental greens if the weather is meek and mild. If its very cold then sprout a crop of sprouting seeds on the kitchen windowsill.

Force chicory under layers of potting compost in the cool greenhouse.

[] Move any pots that can be moved to the shelter of a house wall or even into a cold greenhouse. This will provide some protection against the worst of the winter weather.

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