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October is crisp days and cool nights

October is crisp days and cool nights, a time to curl up around the dancing flames and sink into a good book. ~John Sinor (1930–1996), in San Diego Union-Tribune

Well British summer time is ending, autumn is here and the clocks are going back an hour. Did you know that we have been doing this since 1916? Well, not me personally.

And it’s amazing how many plants are in flower now. The chrysanthemums are just coming out, giving some yellow brightness. And the raised bed is still full of colour, with the fuchsias looking great. We are down to just 2 sunflowers now, though. We are using the old heads to put in the garden over the winter for the birds to feed on.

The veg garden has a mixture of new and old in it. I have cut down the yellowing asparagus ferns now. The sweetcorn is finished too, but I love having it there as it’s so high and waves around in the wind. I’ll be taking the cobs away soon though, and again these will be stored as bird food. The onions and garlic shoots are just beginning to show through the surface of the soil ready to pull up next spring.

The leeks and parsnip are being left growing until Christmas, I must admit, I have almost forgotten they are there. The late planted fennel stems are thickening. Hopefully they won’t be affected by the colder weather as I think they need to get bigger before I can start pulling them up to eat. I’ve only grown them for seeds before, but I am determined to eat them roasted as a veg this year. But I suppose I can always turn them into a soup if they are too small.

If you’ve walked past the garden this week you may have noticed a new figure has appeared. This is the start of the next garden theme, the centenary of the end of World War One. The volunteers are busily making poppies, along with help from the WI, Guides, Rotary and a few friends. So far we have knitted ones, crocheted, ones, felt and foam ones and a lot made from plastic bottles. So keep your eyes open for changes in the garden over the next couple of weeks.

The Blooming Old Gardener

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