Gardening

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Deck the halls with berries and branches

There are so many bits and pieces from the garden you can use to make festive decorations, from Christmas tree clippings as a base for traditional wreaths, to variegated holly with berries, crab apples, poppy seedheads, euonymus and cones.

Amazing acers

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The Japanese maple, or acer, is one of those supremely elegant plants with fine, fern-like foliage in colours to die for, from deep burgundy to pink and white, many producing a brilliant display of intense hues in autumn.

Capture autumn on camera

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Autumn is a glorious season offering plenty of opportunities for garden photography enthusiasts to capture bold-coloured trees, shrubs and fallen leaves.

Go batty in the garden

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They may conjure up images of ghostly goings-on around Halloween time, but bats should be welcomed into our gardens.

Tulip tips

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Of all the bulbs, tulips are probably the most varied in size and colour, ranging from dainty dwarf specimens to frilly, feathery forms and stand-up-straight majestic types.

A moving experience

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Are your borders looking overgrown and overcrowded? If some of your stalwart shrubs and perennials have outgrown their space or simply aren't thriving in their current position, it may be time to move them.

Apples in a pot

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Whether you're into a crisp crunch, a sweet, juicy flavour or the tart tang that makes a crumble or pie a dessert to savour, the apple is among the gardener's favourite.

Big ideas for small spaces

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Think your garden is too small to have the wow factor? Too cramped for carpets of colour or sizeable shrubs?

Pots of pizzazz in autumn

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Don't worry if your summer containers are now past their best because you can perk up your pots with autumn plantings that will give you colour and texture through the cooler months and beyond.

Drift away with bulbs

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There are few things more evocative of spring than drifts of snowdrops or bluebells in dappled shade, or daffodils casting a yellow haze over fresh new grass.

Biological warfare against pests

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Those of us who yearn to ditch the blue pellets and quick-fix chemical sprays in favour of more eco-friendly garden pest controls, should perhaps be taking a biological approach.

Jo tunes in to garden sounds

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When Radio 2 presenter Jo Whiley switches off from her busy broadcasting career, she's frequently found tuning in to music of a different kind.

Create a hedgehog haven

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In the last decade, hedgehog numbers have gone down by 30% due to a variety of factors including habitat loss and changes in farming techniques, according to The Wildlife Trusts, which estimates there may be less than a million left in the UK.

Make outdoor space a fun place

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So you've bought them the junior gardening gloves, mini-forks and little wheelbarrows to get your kids in the mood for gardening - but when all the planting's done, what's next?

Holiday maintenance

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If you're away for a fortnight in the summer holidays and don't want to return to bedraggled borders, dried-out pots and a lawn which looks like straw, take action now.

Slug it out

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The explosion in the slug population predicted by wildlife experts earlier this year has been painfully evident in my garden, as the slimy critters have munched their way through beds, borders and container plants.

Barking up the right tree

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Award-winning garden designer Paul Hervey-Brookes has three dogs - two Spaniels, Honey and Arthur and a Japanese Chin called Nina - none of whom have yet trashed his beautiful garden in the Cotswolds.

Time to climb

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Do you have a tall space you'd like to fill with fragrant blooms? Or perhaps an eyesore you want to mask?