With only a few months' training under her belt, GardenSite's own Flori Bosnigeanu took part in this year's Great Birmingham Run, raising over £500 for the city's Children's Hospital.
October is a busy time in the garden and also in the pond. Before the weather starts to change, Dan Everton thinks it important that you get your pond ready for the winter months by giving it some tender loving care.
Keep pond netting in place to prevent leaves from adjacent trees and hedges falling in and decaying, with the resultant noxious gases later harming your fish. You will also need to continue to remove dying foilage from any pond plants.
Floating plants like Water Hyacinth can also be removed from the pond and kept in the greenhouse during this time as it is delicate in colder weather, especially frost. Water Hyacinth is a native of warmer climates such as Africa and this is also why we rarely see it flower in the UK, as we do not normally have weather that is consistently warm enough.
If you really want to see your Water Hyacinth flower then try keeping it in your greenhouse a little later into the Spring next year, but be careful when moving it outside as it will have acclimitised to the greenhouse warmth.
Remove any blanket weed if this is still a problem and also continue to cut back oxygenating plants and other pond plants that have grown excessively.
If frost has been forecast make prepartions now. When a pond completely freezes over gases are trapped and there could be a lack of oxygen, this can really cause damage to fish and wildlife. I'd definitely say to invest in a decent pond heater, this will keep a small area free from ice allowing gases to escape. It's not going to work miracles and melt all of the ice unfortunately but without it you could face wildlife fatalities right away or later on in the winter.
Click here to view Pond Ice Prevention Products.
You won't need your UV clarifier switched on during the winter as there is not enough sunlight to cause green water problems. We do advise to keep your pump running if possible, as moving water is much less likely to freeze over, especially if there is a substantial flow. This will also add vital oxygen to the pond. Ensure that the pump is raised off the bottom of the pond so as not to disturb the warmer water and any overwintering wildlife.
Create a Halloween party in your house or garden with ideas and suggestions from David Coton that will keep your children and neighbours thrilled and spooked on the 31st October.
Looking for some advice on how to decorate your garden for halloween? David Coton has some great ideas to help you create a horror themed garden to scare your neighbours and any trick & treaters who come to your door.
Used originally to frighten away evil spirits, now placed near the front door to deter trick or treaters, carved pumpkins have been part of Halloween for a very long time. Here Martyn Loach explains the process of creating the scariest pumpkin in your street.
To grow the biggest, scariest pumpkin in time for Halloween isn't easy as they take some time to mature and prefer a warm climate. To have the best chance of success Martyn Loach recommends sowing seed indoors during April and then planting out in late May or June.