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Gardening

Snowdrop season: where in the country to see the best blooms and how to plant your own

It’s snowdrop season, when garden organisations nationwide open their gates to the public to enjoy these little white beauties in all their glory.

How to get your garden ready for spring

It may be worth forsaking some winter beauty to get the best possible garden, with healthy, blooming plants and wildlife come spring.

How to attract birds to your garden

There are many ways to attract birds to your garden – for this weekend’s Big Garden Birdwatch and beyond – if you plant species which will provide them with both food and shelter.

How to get the best smelling garden in winter

There may be few reasons to venture into the garden at this time of year, but scent is one of them. The rich, heady perfume of certain winter-flowering shrubs can blow away the cobwebs and brush off the worst of the winter blues.

What remains of the gardens of Baroness Angela Burdett-Coutts on the Holly Lodge Estate?

Ruth Pavey explores the aristocratic history of the planting in this Highgate village within a village.

Poison dart frogs and juniper-wood fuelled secret whisky distilleries

A plethora of amazing facts – which plants are the tallest and smallest, the smelliest and deadliest – have been collated by Christina Harrison, a specialist in plant ecology and garden history, and Lauren Gardiner, a research fellow at Kew, for their latest book, Bizarre Botany, an A to Z revealing some of the quirkiest stories about plants.

Using evergreens in the garden

Evergreens will form a backbone to the winter garden that ensures you have something of interest to look all through the year, says award-winning gardener Kate Gould

Autumn colours bloom in award-winning gardens and some spectacular Virginia creeper

Gardening columnist Ruth Pavey visits a Hampstead Garden Suburb garden in full autumn colour and tracks down the best Virginia creeper of 2016.

What to do in the garden this week

Enjoy the autumn hues of the velvety sumach and feast on celeriac in mid-November, plus the most important chores to do this week.

Have an Acer autumn with the Japanese maple

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.

How can you encourage bats in your garden?

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

Tulip Fever: Now’s the time to plant these bulbs for a spring show

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.

Can you rearrange your garden to help plants grow?

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.

How to grow apples in pots

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.

Small spaces, big ideas: why a shrubbery is the ultimate urban garden solution

Think your garden is too small to have the wow factor? Too cramped for carpets of colour or sizeable shrubs? Here’s why you should think again.

Visiting Camden in Bloom awards entries growing in public spaces

Ruth Pavey visits a community garden in a gap between buildings in WC1, a pub in Kentish Town wreathed in hanging baskets and window boxes, and a verdant hidden courtyard off Highgate Road, all entries in this year’s Camden in Bloom awards.

Shed heaven: a luxury space with all mod cons where you rest, work, or play

No longer for rusty tools and forgotten bikes, a fancy shed is the new must-have for any garden. You just need to decide which family member gets the monopoly on its use.

Late summer – plant your spring bulbs

Now’s the time to give a thought to the end of winter next year, for a blossoming start to 2017.

What vegetables to plant in September

Are your vegetables looking a little stunted, jaded or straggly this summer? If so, you won’t be alone. But there is still time to get a healthy crop.

Away day: A Tudor botanist and religious dissenter’s garden

The bank holiday is a great opportunity to spend some serious time in your own garden but really keen gardeners can use the extra day to visit other people’s outside space for inspiration or just plain lusting over.

How to create a hedgehog haven

In the last decade, hedgehog numbers have gone down by 30 per cent 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.

Heaven at the foot of the North Circular

Ruth Pavey is transported to a Mediterranean paradise in this slice of Cyprus in Muswell Hill, in an unpromising spot abutting the North Circular.

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