Bareroot planting begins here...

With cooler weather and plenty of rain forecast this month, but with soil still warm enough to promote a bit of root growth before winter, November is the first of the "good" bareroot planting months.

If bareroot is a bit scary, have a look at our planting videos. Watch them and you will see it is actually much easier to plant than container grown...

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Autumn & Winter Colours

If large-scale autumn colour plantings, such as Stourhead (pictured at the top of this letter) are a bit overwhelming or just too large for your garden, there are plenty of smaller subjects to colour your palette in late autumn.

Pictured is my favourite crabapple - Evereste - but the whole family carries masses of brightly coloured fruit deep into winter. They can be planted anytime up to the end of March, and as sensibly sized upright trees (to about 6 metres) they are ideal in small gardens.


Roses for Christmas

Christmas is probably pushing it to be honest although a few roses will flower if the weather is not too cold. New Dawn does well in mild winters and amazingly, last year, we had Gentle Hermione, in flower and wafting her fabulous scent on Boxing Day...

However, in our experience, the most reliable Christmas flowerer - none are guaranteed, remember - is Penny Lane (pictured). And even in bad winters, she will produce flowers well into November. 

5 Sparklers for gardening Guy Fawkes

Cyclamen hederifolium: tough, but delicate looking pink flowers. Great under beech hedges
​​Virginia Creepers: Veitchii is pictured, but they are all brilliant this month!
Medlars: the fruit is at its most eye-catching when the huge leaves have fallen (usually in late October).
​​Cosmos: Not really November, but it flowers from spring until the first big frost kills it. A must in any garden - plant in April/May.
Red Oak: Quite simply a scarlet explosion ... 

Christmas Trees

Just a gentle nudge. If you want one of the best quality non-drop Christmas Trees going, then place your order soon.

Although we have more this time around, they were sold out online by the end of November last year. The vast majority went to customers who had bought before - which says something.

So let the courier take the strain and have yours delivered to your front (or back) door.

Grease is still the word

Grease bands should be wrapped around younger fruit trees and fruit tree grease daubed - liberally - on to older ones this month. Once smeared on the bark, the (very) sticky grease - it is made from rapeseed oil - traps the female wingless moths that climb your trees, to lay eggs, from which grubs hatch to eat your fruit... 

And why not add some Winter Wash to your order while you are in an anti-bug mood?


Summer Leaves?

Actually, summer has left us already, but while we are on the subject, reach for your rake and on a still autumn day burn a few calories and clear up this autumn's leaf fall. There are a multitude of good reasons for doing this but one of the best is...

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A November nudge

In November, the right thing to do is to get as much done outside while the soil is still workable and retains a touch of warmth. (This time, last year, I planted a beech hedge which then grew away very well this spring - Ed.)

Prepare the ground for your new cutting bed maybe - or for your gooseberry plants - whether in the main or kitchen garden. Oh - and here is a list of a few other jobs...

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Fruit Trees
Grove Cross Barn, Castle Cary, Somerset, BA7 7NJ
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