October Gardening with Big Jims



Rhododendron Festival season is upon us and this month flowering shrubs and perennials catch your eye at every turn. Nothing beats the irresistible colour and atmosphere that these plants add to the home garden.


The Edible Garden

  • October is a busy month in the vegetable garden. Good preparation completed in August and September will now start to pay dividends.
  • It is now warm enough to sow seeds directly into the ground - peas, beans, carrots, sweetcorn, silverbeet, beetroot, lettuce, cucumber, courgettes, pumpkins and tomatoes.
  • October is also the perfect time to plants new plants of Rhubarb, passionfruit, and tamarillos. All berries should be planted this month.
  • Feed citrus trees this month with a good citrus and fruit tree fertiliser. Spread out to the drip line of the tree and water well after applying.
  • Feed strawberries with Tui Strawberry Food.
  • Plant out fresh herb plants this month for summer use. Herbs do well in pots and baskets. It is a good idea to plant mint in a pot as it can be very invasive in the garden.
  • October is also tomato month. Plant out tomato seedlings and be sure to stake taller varieties at time of planting. Water well with warm water, and when watering during the growing season be careful not to water the leaves and foliage of tomato plants. Feed tomato plants regularly with Tui Tomato food.


The Flower Garden

  • Plant out seedlings of summer flowering annuals.
  • Plant up hanging baskets and pots - remember to add in some Crystal rain water granules and Saturaid, to enable easier and less frequent watering through the summer.
  • Feed roses with a good quality rose food. Mulch roses and other flowering shrubs to conserve moisture.
  • Spray roses with Shield to prevent fungus diseases and pest damage.
  • Prune back spring flowering shrubs after flowering has stopped.
  • Liquid feed annuals and perennials.



  • Spray lawns with Yates Turfix to eradicate nay broadleaf weeds. Feed with a slow release lawn fertiliser.
  • Re-pot house plants - go one size larger, use fresh, mew potting mix and liquid feed weekly.
  • Remember as plants shoot off so will the weeds. To stop them in their tracks mulch your garden beds with compost, bark or pea straw. Alternatively plant ground covers. We have an excellent selection to suit every condition.