NOVEMBER is the ideal time to get pruning your apple trees. The idea is to have a tidy up, it’s called a ‘Maintenance Prune’.

Remove any dead or diseased branches, any that are crossing or rubbing on each other and any which are getting in the way of your paths, so when pruning these make sure your cut above a bud which is pointing in a convenient position and won’t just grow towards the path again. Many gardeners get nervous when it comes to pruning apples as there are different types of trees which require different care.

Spur-bearing - The apples grow fruit along their branches, you can use the above method quite confidently.

Tip-bearing - They grow their apples on the ends of the branches. Obviously if you go cutting all the ends from these trees you’re not going to get a massive harvest next season, so only remove any problem branches, easy!

Also whilst you’re there pull any weeds away from around the bases and give a good mulch of compost. If they are young trees, make sure their stakes are firmly in place. Also tie in any branches on fan trailed trees too. Once you are done put all your branches somewhere to dry, then later into winter you can have a little fire (making sure there’s no animals hiding there) or better still, leave them as a little spot for our hibernating friends!

My allotment to do list:

Check the supports on fruit trees make sure they are firmly in place for winter.

If your digging a bean trench keep filling it with your kitchen waste.

If you have winter brassicas you may need to net them as birds will start to get peckish now.

Why not collect your leaves or make a few bug hotels?