Monty Don shares what to plant in September for ‘maximum effect’ next spring

Gardening expert Monty Don has shared on his blog which tasks gardeners should be getting on with this month.

The gardening pro said gardeners need to prune two plants – shrub roses and summer-fruiting raspberries – and ripen their tomatoes ready for harvest.

The British horticulturalist also shared which three plants gardeners can plant this month ready for spring.

Spring bulbs in pots

While it may be feeling a little early to be thinking about spring, spring bulbs are on sale and can be planted in pots this month.

However, gardeners should not plant them in the ground yet as it’s “too hard”.

Monty suggested planting crocus and daffodils, specifically the smaller daffodil varieties like ‘tete a tete’.

He also suggested planting reticulate irises, muscari and scillas.

He continued: “These need not be special or different from those in your borders or grass but will flower a little earlier and can be positioned to maximum effect next spring.”

When planting, choose an attractive pot that’s not too deep – a very small pot can also work – and remember to mix the compost with some grit to ensure bulbs do not get waterlogged over winter.

Put the planted pots in a sheltered position ready to move into the sun when they start growing.


Despite its soft-looking exterior, spinach is actually “very hardy” and grows best in mild weather.

If sown this month, it will quickly germinate and become well-established, providing young leaves in autumn and an over-wintering crop that can be harvested “right through to late spring”.

Monty shared how to best sow spinach. He explained: “Rake the ground to a level tilth and draw rills about an inch deep and nine to 12 inches apart.

“I use a scaffolding board, running a drill down either edge, to measure the width, ensure straightness and to stand on.

“Sprinkle the seed thinly and evenly, trying to space them an inch or so apart. Cover them over and water. They should germinate in seven to 10 days.”


While garlic is widely available in shops, hardneck garlic isn’t usually found in local supermarkets which is why people often grow it themselves.

The type most commonly found in supermarkets is softneck stores better. However, Monty assured that hardneck garlic which has a “stiff, upright stalk” is the “best” and the “tastiest”.

He continued: “Hardneck varieties such as ‘Red Duke’, ‘Rocambole’, or ‘Early Purple Wight’ are slower to grow so should be planted in September if possible whilst softneck varieties can wait till October or even November.”

To plant, simply pop an individual clove into the ground, around an inch below the surface, pointed end up. Make sure each clove is around six inches apart and is in well-drained soil.

Gardeners should start to see shoots appear within six to eight weeks.

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