Gardening

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A touch of frost

It's so tempting, I know. All those annuals you've sown indoors from seed are now big enough to plant out, the tomato seedlings are doing well and you just want to clear those windowsills, the greenhouse or the conservatory to make a head start on summer.

Easter gardens to inspire

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When school's out for Easter, it's time for the family to venture outdoors - and there are some great gardens to visit over the holidays, with the added bonus of raising money for charity while you do it.

The Wong way to make crops tastier

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It's all very well joining the 'grow your own' brigade - but what if your tomatoes don't taste sweet, your beans are stringy and your chillis lack punch?

Gardening gifts for mum

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As spring arrives, so do new gardening tools, sundries, gadgets and seeds, which are timely additions to the wealth of possible presents to give your gardening mum on Mother's Day.

Focus on your garden

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Ever thought about how to capture frost-covered holly, close-ups of pretty petals or swathes of woodland bulbs in fading light?

When the chips are down

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Potato aficionados will now have their windowsills awash with trays, on which seed potatoes are being 'chitted', encouraging the sprouts to appear before planting begins in earnest.

Medieval gardening: does it work?

fresh strawberries

I've heard of some strange gardening practices over the years, but some of the tips offered in a medieval gardening book which is said to have inspired Henry VIII's lost Great Garden at Whitehall Palace take the biscuit.

A rose isn't just for Valentine's Day...

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I'm not wanting to put a dampener on romance, but I really begrudge my husband paying a fortune for roses on Valentine's Day when the same money could have gone on a living rose that I can plant in my garden and enjoy for years to come.

Beardshaw sows ideas for new trends

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The weather is going to be the telling factor in garden design trends this year, thanks to several years of excessively wet weather and flooding.

Help feather some nests

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As the RSPB, bird-watchers and gardeners nationwide gear up for the charity's annual Big Garden Birdwatch, the organisation is warning that birds that have benefited from a mild autumn will begin to struggle as the weather changes.

Be inspired by winter walks

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It's time to put down those left-over mince pies, don your walking boots and take a bracing walk through a winter garden bursting with vibrant stem colour, interesting barks, blossoming bulbs and wafts of winter scent.

Monkey business with guerrilla gardeners

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How would you feel if a piece of disused land or a neglected urban space, such as a grass verge or roundabout, was suddenly made into a productive veg patch or pretty flower field?

Walking In A Winter Wonderland

a Tree with shining stars in snowy garden

Winter gardens can be places of pure fairytale. Dusted with snow or dense frost, the stems and skeletons of many plants look magical in the ice cold light.

Poinsettia pointers

poinsettias, See PA Feature GARDENING Gardening Column,  PA Photo/thinkstockphotos

The shops are awash with poinsettias at this time of year in shades of red, pink and cream, the colourful bracts having taken an average of eight weeks to turn from green to red.

Christmas decorations, naturally

a Christmas Wreath,  PA Photo/Handout/Tobias Smith

You may be tempted by expensive, fancy table decorations and wreaths in the shops, but, if you look in your garden, you'll find some brilliant indoor adornments for free.

Christmas comes early for trees

a Christmas tree from Homebase,  PA Photo/Handout/Homebase

The festive season for Christmas trees seems to have jumped a month, as retailers have now been selling real trees for several weeks to the public, despite advice from the British Christmas Tree Growers Association not to buy your tree earlier than December 1.

Leafing through tree choices

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There's no better time to plant trees and conifers, particularly bare-root ones, when the plants are dormant but the soil is still warm enough for the roots to become established before spring.

Meeting the bees' needs

a Bee,  PA Photo/thinkstockphotos

For some time, environmentalists and horticulturists have been urging gardeners to let their grass grow a bit longer, leave at least one area of their garden 'wild' and create nooks and crannies in the form of log piles to allow wildlife to flourish.

A Feast of festive gifts for gardeners

Sloe Gin Kit, harrodhorticultual.com, PA Photo/Handout

Gifts for the gardeners are everywhere, catering for everyone from armchair enthusiasts to green-fingered gadget lovers. Here are just a few ideas to suit different gardening types.