The Summer Holidays are over but the veg garden is still going strong. This is my first attempt at growing pumpkins for Halloween and the weather must have been ideal this year. Planted the seeds back in June and when I cut the leaves back last week this is what I found! All that rain has resulted in some rapid growth. There are only two pumpkins but they are whoppers. They are a bit pale but hopefully now the leaves aren’t covering them they will start to turn a lovely orange. I’m not sure if they will grow any more but I will take my bathroom scales out and weigh them soon. I’ve put them on roof tiles so they won’t rot and put Panda there for scale!
October is the last month of the year to lay turf or sow lawns. Aerate and scarify established lawns and raise the height of mower blades for final cuts to keep grass slightly longer to withstand winter. Consider giving established lawns a feed to reinvigorate following the blisteringly hot summer.
Complete bulb planting including tulips.
Finish all hedge trimming and clear away dead leaves including the dead leaves of rhubarb. Plant new rhubarb crowns and cover with manure.
Harvest all autumn fruit. Plant winter lettuce under glass and lift a few roots of mint, put in boxes in a warm place for winter use. Earth up leeks and celery. Lift and store carrots and beetroot. Cut down tomato plants and ripen any late tomatoes in the greenhouse or kitchen window sill.
Lift dahlia tubers, cut off the tops and store the tubers in a dry frost free place. Do the same with gladioli corms. Plant wallflowers for Spring colour.
On climbing roses cut side shoots back to leave two buds and on bush roses cut back long stems to reduce wind rock. Wash down the greenhouse with diluted Jeyes fluid or similar before insulating for the winter.
Chairman’s Summer Message
The Society’s 125th Show will take place on Saturday 28 July in the grounds of The Stoke Poges School. This an amazing milestone so let us all work together to make it as successful and enjoyable as ever!
Earl Howe and the Countess have accepted our invitation to present the Cups and Trophies. There is a new Trophy presented by Edward Guinness C.V.O., specifically for 16 to 30 year olds, and he is hoping to be able to present it himself.
Many thanks to all those who supplied plants and cakes and who came to buy at the Plant Sale, which raised nearly £1,000 to help cover the cost of the Show. We also owe a debt of gratitude to the Co-op and its members for a generous contribution of £1,638.04 towards the cost of this year’s Show.
Whatever the weather between now and then, I hope everyone will have something to exhibit in the Show; and, also, that we will all encourage our friends and neighbours to look in their gardens and allotments to see what there is that is worthy of being exhibited in the Show. We may be surprised to find things that are ready at the right time.
Entries can come from wider afield up to a 50 mile radius, so if you know keen gardeners, please tell them about the Show, let them know that they can see the schedule on our website, www.hortsoc.org
and enter online. For further information contact Pat Rofe on 01753 662695 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Also, please spread the word about the children’s classes, the art, crafts, home economics, photographic and other classes, there is sure to be something in the schedule that appeals.
Janet Cottrell, Chief Steward for the Show, has provided further information. As she has said, the Show doesn’t just happen, we need volunteers to help make the event as memorable and smooth running, as in previous years. If you have time to spare and would like to help in any way, please get in touch with me on email@example.com or 01753 648040 or contact Jon Homan on firstname.lastname@example.org or 01753 662166