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I know nothing about gardening... what do I need to do before winter sets in?

(9 Posts)
Trills Fri 14-Oct-11 13:12:51

There are some roses.

And some trees.

And some sticky-uppy spike flower things.

Do I need to DO anything to them so that they will be nice and happy next year?

bibbitybobbityhat Fri 14-Oct-11 13:17:00

Don't do anything to the roses except cut any dead flowers off - they need to be pruned early next year Feb/March.

Leave the trees unless they are getting out of hand - but would advise services of a tree surgeon to prune those, because it really is a specialist subject. Luckily, all tree surgeons seem to have a certain something about them, with those harnesses round their thighs, bit like firemen grin.

If the sticky-uppy spike flower things are dead, then cut them off. If they have any seed heads, give them a shake over the bare earth and you will have new sticky uppy flowers next year.

Trills Fri 14-Oct-11 13:35:11

The flowers have fallen off the roses but they've left those round hard thingys - do I leave them or cut them off?

Trills Fri 14-Oct-11 13:35:30

I'm liking the "don't do much" advice grin

vmcd28 Mon 17-Oct-11 20:38:07

OOh, I was going to start a similar thread. I dont know much about gardening, but enjoy it very much. And this year, with having a now-11mo baby DS, the garden got neglected a bit (it was either that or neglecting the baby to do the garden).

We also have an overgrown japanese maple thing - should that be cut back, or wait til Feb/Mar?

louby78 Tue 18-Oct-11 19:41:44

I've just bought a fab gardening book from amazon that tells you what to do month by month by the RHS - I recommend!! Also check out gardeners world as that says what to do now.

trulyscrumptious43 Tue 18-Oct-11 19:51:25

Cut the sticky uppy flower things back to a few inches from the ground above the 'rosette' of lower leaves, don't just chop the old flowers off at the top.
Don't touch your japanese maple until after the frosts have gone. I take it that this specimen is a tree sized thing, not a small one?
If they are normal shrub roses which flower at about waist-chest height, your roses should be cut back in March to around knee-hip height.
Make sure your secateurs are decent ones that don't rip into the plant, it's worth getting good tools even if you don't use them a lot.
(RHS, HNC Garden Design, go on, ask away!)

vmcd28 Fri 21-Oct-11 11:22:48

Ooh, thanks! The Japanese maple is technically a shrub, and started as a tiny thing 6 yrs ago. I cut it back every year during spring or summer, but this year I've got out of the gardening habit, so haven't done it. It is now around 8ft tall, and is starting to hang over the narrow driveway. So I guess I'll have to cut a few bits off.
I can't think of the name of it, but it has black leaves, it's really quite stunning.

trulyscrumptious43 Fri 21-Oct-11 20:17:53

If the name you are thinking of is acer, then that's the other name for Japanese Maple. Don't cut it back just yet though, as if we have another hard winter then it may well lose some bits anyway. Wait until around April. Though obviously if you're going to drive into it then you should cut just those bits back anyway!

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