Gardening

a Titan Arum flowering at Kew,  PA Photo/RBG Kew/Andrew McRobb

Ghoulish greenery

You may be opening your front door to mischievous trick or treaters in ghoulish guises this Halloween, but peep into your back garden and you could also spot some stinking, spiky and poisonous subjects.

Diarmuid's autumn advice

P-78a172b4-ca23-47af-88cb-70136c244ae7

After a glorious summer at home pottering around his garden in Ireland, green-fingered TV presenter Diarmuid Gavin is now preparing his beds for the cooler months.

Protect Our Pollinators

P-3e3d5b42-744f-4413-8718-8d0f722ea24e

We know bees, hoverflies and other beneficial insects provide a welcome sight for gardeners in spring and summer, pollinating our flowers and helping us to reap rich harvests, but these valued species also need plenty of protection in the winter to ensure they return in years to come.

Boost your spring garden with new bulbs

P-ca4e922a-265a-4fd9-9d93-bd7fc0f59592

There's a nip in the air which, to me, signals the end of summer and provides a wake-up call to start planting some spring bulbs to brighten up borders and patios next year.

How to store your surplus

P-c4777120-c1d6-4e63-b31b-1eaec4cb0317

If you are now inundated with ripe tomatoes, juicy green beans, berries and herbs, don't leave them to go stringy or mouldy because the freezer can go a long way to making your crops last well into winter.

Perk up your patio pots for autumn

P-7dbdaa6a-57a1-4201-a8ef-0cdb427b339a

As summer draws to a close and plants in pots start looking tired, it's time to give your containers a fresh new look for autumn and winter.

Ditch the holiday blues

P-925c31ff-a157-4ae5-8c1d-f09b7fa53c41

Gardeners who went on holiday confident that friends and family would water, deadhead and harvest their crops in their absence must be feeling pretty smug.

A shrub for all seasons

P-81aa9a70-38c1-4109-bbd0-24c4039a45ea

As summer marches on, many perennials are now fading, while annuals continue to colour borders and patios. But savvy gardeners should also be thinking creatively with shrubs which will extend the season and provide colour and structure to the border.

The best summer gardens

P-88d22d23-0d50-4b38-bb18-c17353fad0ad

There's no shortage of inspiration when it comes to UK gardens - so if you're staying at home this summer, take a notepad, pen and camera to some of the best in the country.

Don't lose the plot

P-fec0c409-88f7-4630-9293-d06c3a4fc1b6

This summer, during National Allotments Week, many gardeners will be flying the flag for all those who love their allotments with commemorative events and grow-your-own celebrations.

Don't give your garden a holiday

P-c304892c-2731-435d-af24-b123068a3f2a

There's no reason your garden has to end up looking like a sea of straggly, wilted plants while you're on holiday, even if you don't have neighbours or friends who'll water it while you are away.

Attenborough takes action for butterflies

P-7ed104ea-2d00-429b-8176-5d6454833a63

Since creating a meadow area in his own back garden three years ago, Sir David Attenborough has enjoyed an influx of wildlife and is this year hoping to see a wide range of butterflies visiting it.

Be waterwise this summer

P-dc0f5acf-1f79-403e-b010-c5920c119fbd

We may have had the warmest spring on record, but last winter was also the wettest, so we are a long way from a drought and hosepipe ban.

Gardens grow community spirit

P-b59f9f84-47ce-4161-accd-89ad25008eff

As towns increase in size and green space continues to come at a premium, urban community gardens are springing up to allow people in busy, often deprived areas, some space to recharge their batteries.

A taste of summer

P-006b96e8-ec47-499a-acc2-04e17c0943d9

Imagine stepping out on to your patio to pick fresh herbs for your cooking - from fragrant basil to accompany ripe tomatoes and mozzarella, coriander to sprinkle on spicy curries and salads, mint to add to your Pimm's or rosemary to sprinkle over lamb chops on the barbecue. Sounds idyllic doesn't it?

Heaven scent

P-ae766672-e769-4e4e-a904-45728058aabc

When I open my patio doors and breathe in the delicious scent of my neighbour's mock orange, with its pretty white flowers cascading conveniently over my garden fence, I know that summer is really here.

Don't use any old compost

P-584ed2df-35ec-4183-82b5-9836c6b0d76c

Bags of old compost are still being sold in garden centres and DIY stores, with no indication of the date of production on the packaging, according to a report in the latest edition of Which? Gardening, the Consumers' Association magazine.

Does your dad dig it?

P-5c586add-f037-498a-b3c5-69112773f01e

Help gardening dads get to work on their allotments, borders and lawns with the great range of gardening gifts on offer this Father's Day. Choose the right tools and accessories and your dad will soon be making light work of his digging, pruning, staking and clipping.

A perfect match

P-5de7e0fb-ea19-40da-8bc2-d9d325a36b94

There are some combinations that make life feel better - strawberries and cream, roast beef and Yorkshire pudding, gin and tonic.... but for me, one of the classic combinations which will always bring a heavenly note to summer is the pairing of clematis and roses.

Poppy Love

P-c88357ed-5f55-4bcc-8fc0-3467751f933c

During the First World War, the blasted and bombed battlefields across Europe created ideal conditions for the poppy to flourish.

Show and tell

P-c462148c-eadf-4ccd-847b-1932245f9c85

It's not only ideas for planting your own garden that blossom when you visit garden shows - it's ideas about the accessories, tools and trinkets you see along the way, too.