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3 Essential November Gardening Jobs

3 Essential November Gardening Jobs

Place your tender plants in a greenouse, clean your gutters and insulate your autumn planted seeds

Prepare your beds with mulch, and keep leaves for leaf mould

Plant your bulbs now

Lift your dahlias, gladioli and other tender bulbs before the frosts

There is still time to order more autumn planting bulbs

Garden jobs in November - 3 essential jobs

The 3 essential things to do in a November Garden

  1. Plant bulbs
  2. Protect your tender plants
  3. Look after your wildlife

November is a time of preparation, to protect your garden from harsh weather but also to get a good start on spring. You will also have to make sure the wildlife in your garden has everything it needs to make it through the long winter months. 

1. Plant bulbs

Is it too late to plant bulbs?

No, November is a great time to plant most bulbs. The ground is cooler and helps prevent bulbs from either drying out or catching soil-based diseases. It doesn’t matter how you plant them, whether you use a dibber, a drill, or one of our excellent Sneeboer tools.


Bulbs to plant in November include

What is still in flower in November? 

There are some great plants for a November garden. Evergreen shrubs and plants become more of a feature. Berries provide large clumps of colour, particularly pyracantha, these fruits are essential for birds. 

There may still be Dahlias, Nerines, and Crocus still in flower as well as Chrysanthemums but the following plants will come into their own during the winter months

  • Grasses
  • Euonymus - Spindle trees
  • Skimmia
  • Cornus - Dogwood
  • Pyracantha and Holly 
  • Mountain ash trees

2. Protect your tender plants

Lifting Dahlias


Dahlias are harmonious with tulip bulbs, as one comes out the other goes in. If you are planting lots of bulbs then you’ll have to make space. Lifting dahlias before the first frosts would be a good idea. Watch this video

You can leave dahlias in the ground providing the soil is well draining. Dahlia tubers can easily rot. They are not hardy and this is only advisable in mild climates. 

In the Greenhouse 

(Or a cold frame) Your greenhouse is going to be a refuge for a lot of plants. Make sure the gutters are clear. If you planted autumn planting seeds, make sure you have room to work. Bringing in tender plants can take up a lot of space. 

You might want to add an additional layer of insulation to the greenhouse. Use bubble wrap to keep those minus temperatures out. 


A few more jobs to consider


  • Wrap up your tender plants that are staying outside and add mulch to your beds 
  • Every inch of mulch will save you from 1˚C of frost. 3-4 inches of mulch will give mild climates enough protection to leave plants like dahlias in
  • Prune your fruit trees
  • Continue making compost and leaf mould
  • Plant Hellebores and other late winter flowering plants. Snowdrops should be planted by now but if you missed them there is still a chance to buy them in the green from February
  • Take your Roses down by 20% ready for a harder prune in spring
  • Hardy plants will be losing leaves and moving into a dormant stage. It is a good time to start planting trees and bare-roots




3. Look after your wildlife

Feeding Garden Wildlife over Winter

Wildlife has a lot less on offer for food options. Sparse and empty gardens might look tidy but there is no shelter or food for bugs, birds, and other native British wildlife. Most gardeners would agree that planting crocus is a great way to feed squirrels. But what else can we do?

  • Build Hedgehog houses
  • Clean out Birdboxes
  • Install bat boxes
  • Keep a constant supply of bird food
  • Leave an area of leaves and sticks for bugs to hide in
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