Posted by Wayne Robinson
October Monthly Growing Guide

The growing season is finally over, any last summer crop is harvested and stored away and with cooler days approaching the kitchen garden soil gets a final dig. But it’s the not time to hang the tools up, just yet.

October job list

Indoors:

Onion harvest that has finished curing will now need to be stored in baskets, hessian sacks or strung up. Cured Garlic bulbs should be inspected, cleaned with roots cut off and stored in baskets or braided, variety depended.

Greenhouse/Coldframe:

The Tomato plants will be past their best, and may not be fruiting now. Care must be taken if plants have been hit by blight. If so then plants should be destroyed by burning and not added to the compost heap. Other plants, Aubergine, Chilli and Sweet Peppers will still be fruiting but may be coming to the end too. Slow down on watering and feeding. Harvest ripe fruit when at their best. Remove any shading to allow the low daylight in. Give the area a good wash down before adding any new pots of Winter Salads and Vegetables. This will help minimise spread of pest and diseases.

What to grow in October

Outdoors:

Over-wintered Broad Beans can go in from the middle of the month to provide an early crop next year. Lift out last of the main potato varieties; dry the crop, check for pest and disease and store in hessian bags. Dig the area over, and cover with overwinter Green Manure. Keep harvesting Florence fennel, Kale, Spinach and main crop Peas. Kohl Rabi too will be at the best now.

Earth up celery and Leek plants and protect Cauliflower by bending leaves over the curds to block out light.

Place sticky bands on fruit trees to prevent female moth from hibernating on the trees. Last chance to plant out strawberry plants before spring as well as remove debris from perpetual strawberry plants.

Lift and divide sections of perennial Herbs, which can be potted up and kept in the greenhouse or cold frames to use over the winter months.

General tasks: 

Make notes of what was growing where, paying close attention to Crop Rotation and sow Green Manure ideal for the next crop. Keep picking up fallen debris from fruit trees and any fallen fruit affected by brown rot should be collected and burnt.