Monty Don shares the gardening job to do before Christmas for a 'good harvest next summer'

Garlic shoot Monty Don

Monty shared his gardening advice

Sarra Gray

By Sarra Gray

Published: 23/11/2023

- 12:02

Gardeners can complete some outdoor tasks now that will help them out next year

Some plants can become dormant in the winter, but there are still some gardening jobs that need done at this time.

Gardening expert Monty Don shared advice of what to do before the end of the year.

With just four weeks until Christmas, now could be the perfect time to get a head start on the new year.

The expert explained it is time to plant garlic bulbs if this has not been done already.

Planting garlic

Planting garlic bulbs is best done before Christmas


Monty said: "I start planting garlic bulbs in September but it can be done at any time before Christmas to have a good harvest next summer."

Garlic can start to show shoots within four to eight weeks, depending on the type of bulb.

The expert spoke on the different types that Britons can grow.

"The garlic you mostly buy is almost always ‘soft neck’ which has a flexible plaitable stem, stores well (which is why shops stock it) and is often excellent," he wrote on his blog.

"But many think the best garlic are ‘hard neck’ varieties which have a stiff, upright stalk and tends to have smaller bulbs.

"However it is just as easy to grow and get hold of from good suppliers and because it is much harder to buy, it makes sense to grow it yourself."

The ideal time to plant garlic is anywhere from the end of autumn to the start of winter.

The plant needs a period of cold to get the best bulb development, according to the Royal Horticulture Society (RHS).

How to plant garlic

If planting garlic bulbs in the ground, gardeners should start by splitting them into individual cloves.

Plant them with the flat end downwards and the pointed end upwards, the RHS explained.

It added: "Space the cloves 15cm (6in) apart, with the tip 2.5cm (1in) below the soil surface.

Garlic shoot

The expert shared the best jobs to do now


"In light soil, deeper planting can produce larger bulbs, but don’t plant deeply in heavy soil. Space rows 30cm (1ft) apart."

Monty shared more advice in his blog about the gardening jobs to do in November.

He explained it is a "very good month" to plant lots of things, such as trees, shrubs, hedges, perennials and tulips.

Monty, who has more than 30 years of expertise, said it is time to protect and tend to plants as well as look after furniture in the garden.

"Tender plants are protected, leafy perennials cut back, furniture brought in ready for repair and repainting, garden machinery checked over and serviced and the horticultural hatches battened down," he penned.

It is also time to prepare the lawn to avoid "damage in winter" and experts shared the tasks to do outside now.

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