November days are shorter compared to the previous month and these days should never deter you from paying any less attention to your garden

Longer nights will certainly give you more enjoyment in your garden. There are still lots of sunny days to linger out.

The countdown to Christmas has begun. You should have harvested all your pecan nuts. This should really be done in October when the outer shells begin to split open. The crows know exactly when they are ready and can strip a tree before you are up in the morning! Don’t eat them immediately as they need some time to harden, but they are really very nutritious and help to lower high cholesterol levels.

The lower temperatures in November on their own will encourage plants to put out new growth and bulbs and corms buried deep down to emerge into the sunshine again. If you have bought some Colchicum bulbs (Autumn Crocus) a few weeks ago and already they are in flower and giving me much pleasure. Irises and Chasmanthe are putting on growth spurts. After the long ‘closed for growth’ summer season, they are ready for the off. While irises remain upright, sometimes the weight and height of the chasmanthe leaves cause them to topple.

A favourite South African plant Tulbaghia, grows almost everywhere here. The Royal Horticultural Society’s Magazine The Garden featured them in their August edition. Much hybridising has been done in the UK and there are now many varieties available.

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