The weather might be cooler and time spent outside may be less, but maintaining a clean garden and keeping your plot tidy will make new planting easier when spring arrives.
Follow these five tips to keep your outdoor space looking good throughout the autumn and winter months.
1. Clear away furniture
If you’ve been entertaining guests in summer, now is the time to cover or store away any tables, benches and chairs to prevent damage caused by weather. Bring any cooking equipment such as barbecues and utensils inside, and wrap chimineas with waterproof covers.
2. Clean patios and decking
Sweep and clean walkways, patios, decking and driveways regularly If your garden is open and surrounded by trees, sweeping regularly is a must. Falling leaves and wet weather conditions can cause dangerous slippery surface and if left can start to rot. Use a hard wearing outdoor brush to sweep away leaves and bag up for compost. A pressure washer can be used at the end of winter to remove any dirt build up, mildew or algae.
3. Look after outbuildings
Greenhouses, summerhouses and sheds can all be susceptible to the winter weather. Keep glass on greenhouses clean throughout winter to make cleaning up in spring easier, as dirt can build up over months and become difficult to remove. Treat any wooden outbuildings with a weather protection wood preserver to prevent colour fading or damage to the wood.
4. Cut back hedges and foliage
Use a good pair of secateurs to trim thick stems right back and remove any dead branches and leaves. This will make maintenance in spring easier, prevent overgrowing and overcrowding, and reduce dropping leaves.
5. Take care of the lawn
In a dry winter, grass will still need plenty of water. If you spot brown patches on your lawn, ensure it is watered regularly. Trim back the edges to make maintenance in spring easier and keep weeds down by regularly checking for them. Clear away fallen leaves from the lawn too, to prevent rot.
Photograph: Tom Weller