Weekend work: Time to take cuttings from tender perennials


What to do

Take cuttings from tender perennials such as fuchsia, geranium, helichrysum, osteospermum and felicia. Overwinter them in a greenhouse or shelter.

Start planting daffodil bulbs. They always look better set in groups rather than dotted about singly. If you are planting in grass, choose a spot where the dying daffodil leaves and the ever-lengthening grass will not irritate you.

Cut off and dry seed heads from alliums, Chinese lantern, honesty and poppies and hang them upside down to dry for winter decorations. Peel off the outer coats of the honesty discs to reveal the silvery central membrane.

House plants need less food and water as growth slows down. Tuberous rooted begonias and gloxinias should be laid on their sides in a cool greenhouse.

The heavy dews and still air of early autumn may encourage attacks of mildew on Michaelmas daisies, new growth of rose bushes and young forget-me-not plants. Spray with fungicide to keep this disease under control.

What to see

Barnsley House, the garden made famous by the late Rosemary Verey, is now a hotel and on Wednesday (11am-2.30pm) the head gardener, Richard Gatenby, is leading a tour through the gardens which will finish with a two-course lunch. Tickets cost £46. To book, call 01285 740000 or go to barnsleyhouse.com. Barnsley is near Cirencester, Glos GL7 5EE