To do on your plot in October


By now the maincrop potatoes should be ready. As the foliage dies back you can cut this off and leave the potatoes for a couple of weeks. This will prevent any stray blight spores from infecting your crop. Wait for a sunny dry day and dig up the potatoes, brushing off excess soil and letting them dry before storing in hessian or paper sacks in a frost free, dark shed.

The last of the beans should be picked now, compost the foliage but leave the roots with their nitrogen full nodules in the soil as a fertiliser.

Cabbages should come up now too,

Any green tomatoes on outdoor plants may as well come in now before the frost gets them.

General Jobs on plot

As ground becomes vacant you can dig it over and spread manure over the surface. Leave the soil roughly dug in large clumps, the freezing and thawing of water in the soil will cause the soil to break up finely so becoming easier to handle in the spring.

October and November are good months to undertake double digging, incorporating manure into the bottom of the trench and deepening your topsoil.

Dig in any green manure crops such as mustard that you planted earlier in the year.

Your compost bins will be filling up as the last of the crops come in so now is a good time to give them a turn to help even decomposition and cover them to keep them warm and damp rather than soaking wet.

Sowing, Planting and Cultivating

You can plant your garlic now although this job will hold over into November easily. If you have time and the weather is fine.

Remove any yellowing leaves from over-wintering brassicas, they are of no use to the plant and will encourage botrytis to develop.


When the strawberries have finished tidy up the bed, cut off the tops, remove dead leaves, rotting berries you missed under the foliage and remove self-planted runners.

Fruit bushes such as black and red currants should be pruned, as should the gooseberries. Now and November are good months to attend to the raspberries, blackberries etc. It’s also a good time to plant new canes.