Garlic bulbs Matthew pilachowski unsplash
The nights may be drawing in, but there’s still things you can sow and grow at this time of year. We look at what you can plant in November.

Helpful information

Timing: November

Where to do it: Outdoors, indoors

Garden space: Large garden, small garden, balcony, allotment

  • Adding plants to the garden can offer a good mix of bigger and smaller bodily movements
  • Growing plants engages our nurturing instincts with hope and anticipation for the future
  • It can be tempting to start hibernating this time of year! Growing plants later in the year can get us outside, where we can appreciate nature around us
Autumn crops raspberries
Ripe red autumn raspberries

As autumn comes to an end, it’s easy to neglect our gardens, pack away our garden tools and assume our fruit and vegetable plots are redundant until next spring!

There are still a number of vegetable and fruit crops you can plant in November. Here are some recommended ones.

Broad beans

Broad beans can be sown in the ground in autumn. Choose a sunny, sheltered spot with well-drained soil. In wetter parts of the UK, the success rate may be lower than drier and sunnier areas.

When you sow in late autumn, your beans are unlikely to need watering or weeding. You can look forward to them maturing and being ready to harvest in spring, variety depending.


Garlic is good to plant in late autumn as it benefits from an initial period of cold. Look for autumn-planting varieties. Plant the bulbs in fertile soil, then mulch. You can also grow garlic in pots.

Garlic doesn’t like to sit in water. If your soil is heavy and wet, you could put an inch of sand or grit in the planting hole before adding the clove and covering with compost.

Garlic needs little maintenance. Just water in dry spells and weed when needed. Other than that, wait patiently until harvest time in summer.


Spinach is a crop that produces all year round. Just cut what you need and it grows again.

It’s generally best to sow spinach seeds straight into their final growing spot. Transplanting or potting on spinach seedlings can be quite challenging.

You can also grow perpetual spinach in November. Despite the name and how much it looks and tastes like spinach, it’s actually a type of chard. Regular harvesting of your perpetual spinach will keep it cropping well into spring.


Mild days in late autumn or early winter are a good time to plant raspberry canes.

You can find summer or autumn fruiting varieties. Autumn fruiting varieties are typically a bit easier to grow, as the sturdy canes do not need staking. You can grow both, but try not to plant them right next to each other – you may get confused about which needs pruning and when!

Choose an open, sunny spot with free draining soil. Before planting, give the roots a good soak in water.

Fruit trees

November is a great month for planting bare-root fruit trees. Apples, cherries, pears and plums are just some of the many possibilities.

Read our guide to planting bare-root fruit trees for more advice.

Sweet pea seeds are sown on top of toilet roll tubes
Sweet peas sown into toilet rolls

Alongside the vegetables to grow in November (see above), there are some flower seeds you can sow now. Most of these need to grow somewhere sheltered, like a greenhouse, coldframe, or inside on a windowsill.

You could try sowing:

Tulip bulbs and shoots
Tulip bulbs and shoots

There are some bulbs that are still happy to be planted in November:

  • Tulips (November is one of the best months for these)
  • Daffodils

You could also plant bulbs like amaryllis and hyacinth indoors. It is probably too late now for them to flower for Christmas, but you should still be able to enjoy winter blooms.

Autumn lawn care 3
A lawn with leaves on it

If you’ve forgotten to sow grass seed, or are noticing bare patches, you may be wondering about doing it in November.

Grass seed needs moisture and some warmth to germinate. The success rate in November would generally be low. But, if it’s an unusually mild month – particularly towards the start of the month – you could still try.

If the weather is more typically seasonal and cold, you’re better to wait until spring.

Purple pansies
Purple pansies

November may not be peak season for flowers, but there are plants you could get in the ground now. Some will give immediate colour and others will settle for the future:

  • Bare root roses. They will establish now ready for next spring
  • Hardy shrubs and perennials. Garden centres will have some plants available to plant now that will survive through the winter, like dogwood or hamamelis. They probably won’t grow much until next spring
  • Pansies and violas, for bright winter colour
Photinia red robin hedge
A hedge including Photinia 'Red Robin' plants

Mid autumn through to early spring is a great time to plant bare-root trees and hedging plants. The plants have time to establish before the growing season the following spring.

For more advice, read:

Share your tips

What are you planning to plant this November? We'd love to hear! Send us a message by emailing info@thrive.org.uk

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