Summer is very much over and we’ve been experiencing a few blustery days down South. I always know when autumn is coming because my efficient Marston & Langinger roof vents are closing earlier as the evenings draw in. The roof blinds, which have been a huge bonus this hot summer are due for a rest, your plants need all the daylight they can get.
- There is still time to take geranium cuttings. They will root easily when placed in a small flower pot with the help of a little rooting powder.
- Plectranthus, commonly known as spurflowers and an ornamental member of the mint family, are another rewarding plant to take cuttings from. Place a non-flowering shoot in a small flower pot and cover with a polythene bag, they will root easily.
- Fuchsia, both hard and half-hardy perennial varieties root easily. Take a non-flowering shoot, remove the bottom leaves and trim the stem off just below the leaf node. This should be inserted into your rooting medium, half way up the stem – if they have taken they will root in early spring.
- Cut down on the amount of water you give all your plants in the conservatory
- Over watering does more damage in the cold months than you would think
- Bougainvillea need even less water in the winter – keep it to the minimum
Splashes of colour
- During October, in a pot just larger than the bulb, plant Amaryllis bulbs and cover with two thirds soil. They will add a bit of tropical colour 6-8 weeks after planting. Keep them in an even temperature, between 20-25°c until they start to shoot – an airing cupboard will do, and then move them to a warm conservatory.
- Invest in a dipladenia plant, always reliable for colour most of the year with vibrant pink trumpets and deep green, shiny foliage.
- If you haven’t got lots of space for cuttings or propagating in your conservatory, a simple way to add some colour is with a bright centrepiece – add a splash of yellow with sunflower from the garden, or a variety of colours with pink and red cyclamens.
You know my bug phobia? Don’t let them spend a cosy winter in your conservatory, be vigilant and spray!