Prune Climbing Roses
Once the flowers start to fade, it’s time to prune climbing roses. If they are still growing strong, with lots of flowers, wait until next month. Sometimes it’s hard to distinguish between a climbing rose and a rambling rose. Usually ramblers are the roses that flower only once, normally in June, whereas climbers repeat flower almost all summer. It’s relatively straightforward to prune climbing roses. Using sharp secateurs, firstly remove any dead or diseased wood, then prune all the side shoots from all branches to two or three buds (these will form new growth next year). If there are new shoots growing from the base, these can be tied in to form the new framework of the plant.
Once you have mowed the lawn, it’s a good idea to trim the edges. This makes a huge difference to the overall appearance of your lawn and is very simple to do. Use a pair of lawn-edging shears to cut away any long grass that is beginning to encroach into the borders. Ideally you should do this after every mowing.
It may be too difficult to use edging shears if your garden has encroached too much into the borders. If the edge to your lawn has become really overgrown, use a spade or half-moon edging tool to re-cut the edges of your grass.
If your grass continually grows into the border and constantly looks untidy, you may want to consider using some sort of permanent lawn edging. This is essential if you want to keep gravel off a lawn. We use a steel product called ‘Everedge’ to give a crisp clear edge between the lawn and gravel; this is a great product, especially if you have curved borders. If it’s a straight edge, gravel board is the simplest and most cost-effective option. For a really lovely finish you could install a brick edge, but this is more expensive and needs some degree of brick laying skill.
Now is an excellent time to buy or make a compost bin for all the autumn debris. Then you can look forward to adding all that organic matter to the borders to maintain the garden in good heart. Growing plants intensively, as we tend to do, means that a lot of goodness is taken out of the earth in a relatively small area. It is therefore essential to put something back in order to get the best out of the plants. Making you own compost is an ideal way of doing this. Although there are plenty of bins to buy, I have always found that the best ones are the homemade variety. Remember to use a good mix of different materials to make the best compost. If you grow your own vegetables those alone will generate plenty of material. Don’t use woody stems or diseased leaves, as your compost bin probably won’t get to a high enough temperature to break these down.