In September, the weather tends to get a little cooler, though sometimes there’s some late sunshine. It’s also harvest time, so if you have a fruit and veg patch, you should be spoiled for choice with things to include in your autumn soups and crumbles.
September is also the time to get out and plant bulbs for the spring. Make the most of the last sunny and (kind of) warm days.
Your September garden to-do list:
Divide herbaceous perennials
Pick any autumn raspberries and other berries
Collect and sow seeds from perennials and hardy annual plants
Dig up any potatoes before the damp weather comes and slugs destroy them
Cover ponds with a net before the leaves start to fall
Continue watering new plants-use collected rainwater where you can
Don’t water houseplants as often
Clear out your greenhouse so it’s ready to be used in the colder weather
Cover leafy veg with netting to stop birds eating them as they stockpile food for the colder weather
Cover leafy vegetable crops with bird-proof netting
Plant bulbs that will flower in the spring
Autumn wouldn’t be autumn without soup
As the days get shorter and colder, thoughts turn to food that’s warm and comforting. Gone are the summer salads and in comes the heartier fare.
Here’s a recipe for a soup you can enjoy as the weather gets colder, complete with ingredients from your very own garden, of course.
Roasted celery soup
This recipe makes two servings.
8 sticks of celery, cut into small chunks
1/2 bulb fennel, cut into small chunks
1 medium potato, peeled and diced
750ml chicken stock
2 tbsp olive oil
Salt and pepper
How to make it:
Pre-heat your oven to about 180C. Put the celery and fennel into a large roasting tin, drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Toss everything together so the vegetables are evenly coated. Roast the veg for about 45 minutes until they are soft, but not brown.
Heat the chicken stock in a saucepan, add the potato, and cook until the potato is soft.
When the celery and fennel are cooked, add them to the chicken stock, and put the mixture into a blender. Taste the soup, and add more seasoning to taste if required.