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Gardening tips for September

Gardening Tips for September

After the busy summer garden season, September is the perfect month to reset your flower and vegetable garden, whilst starting to make plans for next spring. The soil is still warm from the summer season and perfect for establishing new plants and the arrival of spring bulbs inspire new ideas for next year

Gardening tips for September

Tubs & Baskets

  • Continue to deadhead, water and feed summer planting in tubs, baskets and borders to prolong the display for as long as possible
  • As summer bedding plants finish flowering or look tired then replace with fresh new season plants to provide colour throughout the autumn and winter season. Pansies, Violas and Wallflowers are traditional favourites that can also be planted with hardy tub and basket plants creating a display to brighten the dullest of autumn and winter days.  Also start planting spring bulbs now to extend the colour throughout the spring next year
  • Remember to change the compost in your pots, to ensure your new plants have the best start.  Use peat free multipurpose with John Innes as it will drain well over the wetter months.  Any old compost can be used to mulch borders making sure there is never any waste
Gardening tips for September


  • Our new season bulbs for spring 2024 are now in store and online. It includes inspirational colour mixes, new varieties, as well as all your classic favourite varieties that excite us every spring
  • As gaps appear in beds and borders, now is the ideal time to plant bulbs such as Crocuses, Daffodils, Narcissi and especially Snowdrops that start your spring display in February
  • Dwarf Narcissi and Crocus planted with winter bedding in patio pots and hanging baskets will give a cheerful splash of early spring colour
  • Daffodils can be planted from September onwards, while Tulips are best planted in November. Be sure to buy as early as possible though to get the widest choice
  • Indoor bulbs such as prepared Hyacinths can also be planted in September in pots, bowls and baskets, they are specially treated so that they flower at Christmas time
Gardening tips for September


  • Introduce winter structure to the garden with evergreen shrubs such as Viburnum tinus or Skimmia, they can be planted in a pot near your front door to appreciate their flower and spring fragrance
  • Fiery shades of early autumn foliage start to light up late summer borders. Shrubs such as Acers (Japanese Maples), Cotinus (Smoke Bush) or climbers such as Parthenocissus (Virginia creeper) come into their own now
  • Visit your local store to see all the new ranges freshly delivered and ready for planting now. Give Azaleas, Rhododendrons and particularly Camellias a good drink of water now to ensure they set plenty of buds for spring
  • Tree planting season starts now and you will get the greatest choice if you shop early.  Planting now will help the trees establish before the winter sets in
Gardening tips for September


  • Dead head Dahlias to encourage further flowering until the first frosts
  • Remove faded blooms on cottage garden perennials to extend the flowering season
  • Dead head roses to encourage a late season flush and tie in whippy growths on rambling roses to bear next year’s flowers
  • As gaps appear in beds and borders, sow hardy annuals such as Nigella (Love in the Mist) and Centarea (Cornflowers) to bloom in spring
  • Plant new perennial plants now while the soil is still warm to enable them to establish a strong root system in readiness for spring
  • Plant biennial  Matthiola – (Scented Stocks) and bee-friendly Foxgloves now to fill your borders colour, fragrance and pollinators next spring
Gardening tips for September


  • Harvest crops of garlic, onions and shallots as tops start to yellow and topple over. Leave to dry in a cool shed before storing away in breathable drawstring bags for the winter months
  • Give tomato plants as much sunshine as possible to ripen last trusses of fruit
  • Keep picking courgettes when they are young and tender to encourage yet more to follow
  • Continue to water squash and pumpkins as they ripen under the late summer sun
  • Rocket and winter salad leaves can be sown now, as well as a last sowing of quick growing radishes
  • Coriander grows well from a sowing now that the intense summer heat has passed
  • Swiss chard sown now will make strong plants for tasty winter pickings. The striking stem and foliage colours look great in both the garden and on the plate
  • Winter spinach can be sown now and is less likely to bolt with the cooler temperatures
  • Sow broad beans and hardy peas for the earliest tender spring pickings
Gardening Tips for September


  • Apples should be ripening now. Check that they are by gently cupping the fruit in your hand whilst carefully twisting the stem. If it is ready it will come away with ease. Do the same with plums to avoid fruits falling and bruising on the ground
  • Excess apples can be stored in a cool shed for the winter. Space apples on a slatted shelf to keep them cool and allow air circulation. Make sure they are not touching to prevent any spread of disease
  • Cut back summer fruiting raspberry canes that have finished fruiting, to the ground, tying in the new whips for next year’s crop as you go
  • Net late summer/autumn raspberry canes to prevent bird damage
  • Pot up strawberry runners for fruiting next summer
Gardening tips for September


  • September is the ideal month to give your lawn some attention that will ensure that it recovers from the summer season and goes into the winter strong and healthy ready to look its best next spring
  • Scarify with a lawn rake or electric scarifier to remove moss and dead grass
  • Lawns will benefit from being aerated to reduce compaction after the use it has had during the summer months. The easiest way to do this is to use a garden fork and push it 15cm into the ground and wiggle to create holes, repeat every 30cm
  • Distribute a thin layer of lawn dressing all over the lawn and brush it into the holes.  You can add top soil and lawn dressing to fill any dips and holes prior to re-seeding
  • Apply autumn lawn feed to boost your lawn ready for the coming winter
  • Any bare patches can be repaired with lawn seed, rolls of turf or a repair kit
  • September is the ideal time to establish a new lawn, the rains of autumn helping to settle in the new lawn ready for winter

We would love to see what tasks and projects you’ve been up to in the garden so make sure to tag us @dobbiesgardencentres so we can see all your gorgeous gardens!