By now autumn is beginning to make itself felt. Usually we can expect one or two frosts so make sure that all plants that might be affected by frost have been lifted and stored or given some other form of protection.

Many flowering plants are finished and will need to be cut back, while others have dead flowers that will need removing. At this time of year one of the criteria for a successful garden is to keep it looking good by removing the dead and the dying.

VEGETABLES - Harvest main crop beet, carrots, turnips and potatoes. Gather all outdoor tomatoes. Plant spring cabbage. Plant garlic. Carry on with winter digging.

FRUIT - Plant raspberries. Remove fruiting canes of blackberries and other briar fruit. Finish picking apples and pears and store where necessary. Prepare beds for new fruit trees and bushes. Remove netting when fruiting is finished to allow birds to clear pests.

FLOWERS - Remove the remains of the summer bedding plants and dig the ground in preparation for winter pansies and violas, forget-me-nots, stocks, polyanthus, wallflowers and spring flowering bulbs. Replant containers with winter hardy annuals.

GREENHOUSE - Sow hardy annuals. Sow sweet peas. Reduce watering. Clean and disinfect the greenhouse. Remove all shading and wash down glass. Fit bubble polythene for insulation.

LAWNS - Reduce the amount of mowing and do not cut grass too short. Rake to remove thatch. Spike to alleviate summer compaction. Top dress with autumn weed and feed.

TREES & SHRUBS - Check and renew if necessary all stakes and ties. Check that all climbers are tied in. Clean under hedges.

 GENERAL  - Start collecting fallen leaves for making leaf-mould. Shred and compost all dead, herbaceous or woody material.