Jobs to do in your garden this November

Now the clocks have changed, there is no denying that autumn is well and truly upon us. Although many trees seem to have held on to their leaves for longer than usual in our area (perhaps as it’s been so wet and stayed relatively mild so far), November is when gardeners move in to full ‘winter protection’ mode.  Here’s our round-up of this month’s important jobs.
Clear Leaves

autumn leaves

As leaves do start to fall, it’s important to clear them from paths (which could get slippery), lawns (which will suffer from lack of light) and ponds (which will go sludgy).  Some people will tell you to clear them from your beds and borders too but, actually, there are some benefits of leaves as a mulch and for wildlife, so we’ll leave that to your personal choice.

Those collected leaves could be next year’s leaf mould or compost, so think about reusing them in your own garden where you can.  If you are planning a bonfire (if it’s permitted in your area), please check for hedgehogs and other wildlife sheltering before you light it!

If any of your leaves were from roses affected by black spot, don’t compost them as it risks carrying the disease into next year.

Protect Outdoor Pots

frosty pots

While your garden pots might be frost-proof, the soil and plants within them probably won’t be!  Now is the time to raise any outdoor pots off the ground so they can drain well; pots full of water are more susceptible to freezing and therefore damaging plant roots than free-draining ones.

If you’re not sure if the pot itself is frost-proof, bubble wrap, layers of thin foam or hessian tied securely around it will offer some protection to both the pot and the plant.  We have a range of beautiful outdoor pots which are frost-proof if you want to be sure.

(And while you’re outside with the bubblewrap, it’s also useful for insulating garden taps and greenhouses!)

Protect Fruit Trees

fruit tree

There are a number of varieties of moth (collectively known as winter moth) whose caterpillars love to eat new buds as they emerge in the spring.  They particularly favour fruit trees so can potentially devastate your crop. The lifecycle of these moths is such that adding a grease band to the trunk of your fruit trees now helps prevent the females crawling up the tree to lay their eggs in the first place. Horticultural grease bands or tree barrier glues are a pesticide-free way to help reduce this problem.

Winter wash is another pesticide-free solution, best suited to smaller trees. A vegetable oil-based liquid, applied to the branches between now and February, it will smother any eggs that have been laid.  We have grease bands and winter wash in store.

For further information on pests and diseases in fruit trees, try the RHS website.

Support Our Wildlife

robin redbreast

Although there are berries around at this time of year, garden birds appreciate any additional food we can offer them.  As well as being lovely to see them, attracting birds to our gardens helps provide natural predators for other bugs, of course.  Some species favour different types of food so why not check our range of Tom Chambers bird foods in store to see what is suitable for your regular visitors?

It’s important to offer fresh water to birds and other wildlife, as well as food.  If it’s been cold overnight, always check that water sources haven’t frozen and top them up when required.  (On really cold winter days, this might mean checking more than once a day!).  And it’s important to keep any bird and wildlife feeders clean to prevent diseases; clean them out and scrub them regularly.

Plant Tulip Bulbs


Now is the time to start planting tulips for a spectacular display next spring.  They work brilliantly in pots (as tulips are not always reliable repeat flowerers, this makes it easy to dig them up if you want) but will look just as impressive in borders too.  Plant them around 4 inches (10 cm) deep, making sure the bulbs have at least twice their height in depth of soil above them.

More November reading and tips:
What to plant in November – broad beans!
Get ahead with your Christmas shopping
Winter is a great time to tackle some bigger garden maintenance jobs
The benefits of ground cover planting
Think about the wildlife in your garden this coming winter




N. Haggard 20 September 2022

I just wanted to drop you a quick note to say how delighted I am with my new garden.

Jon, my designer, listened to my ideas and delivered on everything I asked for. I wanted something different to any garden I’d had before, no lawn, no landscaping but packed with plants. He designed such a lovely secret garden, around a statement tree. And I have to commend him for his unwavering patience! I changed my mind a hundred times but never did he give me the impression that he was losing patience with my endless indecision. And my confidence in him led me to place an order for over £10k.

My landscaping team, Blade and Tony, were exceptional, from their work ethic, skill and knowledge, to the way they dealt with me, the customer. My standards are very high and I couldn’t fault them.

All in all, a very professional team of people. And it showed that they all care. I’m over the moon with the finished result. I will send you a before and after photo. Thank you so much.

A delighted customer.

G. Gray. May 2022

My front garden has been transformed by Andy and Bradley who both worked incredibly hard and I am delighted with the result. Andy had the vision and skill to turn my idea into reality and I can't thank him enough.

C. Haig Sept 2021

We recently had our garden landscaped by Hambrooks and I just wanted to pass on my thanks, not just for the outcome - which is superb - but for the professionalism of all the staff involved on the job who are all a credit to you company. Mike, Dave, Les and Adam.

H. Sharp Sept 2021

I just wanted to let you know how delighted I am with my new garden. Melanie was a delight to work with and the ideas she had have worked perfectly. Also Sheldon laid the patio beautifully and him and Dave were a pleaseure to have at my house. Quiet workers and polite.

B. Rendell April 2021

I would like to say how delighted we are with the work carried out. Mel, Paul and Tony all worked very hard, they totally took on board the specific need relating to safety as well as the general garden issues. Paul and Tony were excellent at consulting and discussing with me what I felt best in terms of the brief and adjusting if and as necessary, constantly pleasant and polite to deal with. Mel had picked up on particular issues from the first consultation and offered valuable advice. The outcome means a great deal less worry for me going forward.
Altogether a very positive experience and outcome which I would not hesitate to recommend to others.

Stephen March 2021

Dom and Adam's work (garden maintenance) is greatly appreciated. Dom really listened to everything we discussed very carefully and went out of his way to understand and then act upon that discussion. We are extremely pleased with the work done - both to the pond and pyracantha.


We have been coming to Hambrooks for years and it's our favourite garden centre because of its friendly helpful staff and a great selection of plants and trees and the garden design ideas.

“We wanted to write and say how pleased we are with our low maintenance garden makeover. We are very impressed with the attitude of your staff who were prepared to listen to our requirements. Your team John and Rick brushed up and left everything tidy at the end of the day. We now have a garden we can manage and it looks great. THANK YOU HAMBROOKS.”

Mr & Mrs Venables, Southampton. April 2019

“Dear Josh & Mike We just want to say you both did a brilliant job of designing our garden along with the guys who did the work who were amazing. A few weeks on its looks even better now some of the plants are blooming. Thank you!!”

Mr & Mrs Gazzard, Winchester July 2019

“To James, John & Rikki. Thank you so much, we are delighted with our new garden. We really appreciate the attention to detail, the high quality workmanship and the standard of the finished project. We are amazed at how John & Rikki resolved the difficulties of the site and by the quality of their craftmanship. It was a pleasure to work with them and thank you for making our ideas into something we will enjoy for years to come.”