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Taming the wildlife...

There is plenty of advice on how to counter the damage those little winged beasties and bugs can do to our plants during the summer months, but what about those rather larger, furry or winged pests01:00 Thu 07th Mar 2002

Garden buildings are really in vogue these days. Why the sudden interest

A. Only a decade ago it was only really the great and the good had more than a rickety garden shed or a home-made treehouse for the kids at the bottom of the garden. But now garden buildings are big01:00 Thu 07th Mar 2002

The weather is still pretty foul. Is there much we can do in the garden

A. Before getting into specific jobs it is worth repeating the old proviso about the weather. March can be a funny month, with the first hints of spring suddenly drowned out by days of torrential01:00 Thu 28th Feb 2002

What are variegated plants

A. They are plants whose foliage is variously coloured. The variations can occur around the margins of the leaf as streaks or even spots. Q. What causes variegation in foliage A. Multicoloured01:00 Thu 28th Feb 2002

You don t hear so many horror stories about cowboy builders these days. Is the problem going away

A. Far from it. With the current property boom in full swing and more and more people moving there have rarely been richer pickings for the cowboys. Last year it was estimated that there were over01:00 Thu 28th Feb 2002

What is grafting

A. Grafting is a method of plant propagation where simpler methods like taking cuttings or growing from seed are either unsuccessful or too time-consuming. It is commonly used for growing and01:00 Tue 19th Feb 2002

How old is the National Garden Scheme

A. The National Garden Scheme started in 1927 making this its 75th anniversary. This year there are a number of special events and openings to mark the occasion. Q. How did it come about A. 01:00 Tue 19th Feb 2002

Why is wallpaper making a comeback

A. Wallpaper is the new alternative to people who have tired of paint and its the uniformity, lack of texture and often bland and unobtrusive colour. Bold, strong patterns colours and textures are01:00 Tue 19th Feb 2002

Why are we obsessed with snowdrops as a nation

A. After months of scouring our often bleak winter gardens, snowdrops provide the first signs of life, and a very pretty one too. There is something about their tiny but sturdy dark green leaves01:00 Fri 15th Feb 2002

How long have allotments been around

A. There are some small 'Celtic' fields in Lands End, Cornwall dating back to 100BC that are still in use as allotments today. The word originates from the reign of Elizabeth I when common land01:00 Fri 15th Feb 2002

Why do we need to have a survey done when buying a house

A. The only time a survey is not required is when the house is brand new. Otherwise a survey is essential to highlight the condition of the property, both the good and the bad. All lenders will01:00 Fri 15th Feb 2002

Why are red roses associated with romance

A. It goes back to Greek mythology. Aphrodite, the goddess of love of course, is said to have scratched herself on the thorns of a white rose as she rushed to comfort her lover, Adonis, and her01:00 Fri 08th Feb 2002

They say getting the lighting right in a room is the most difficult aspect of interior design. Why

A. For a start we are all surrounded by it during every waking hour, but there is a huge difference between how a room looks in daylight and how it looks under artificial light. The only time we01:00 Fri 08th Feb 2002

What makes a vase a vase Surely you can stick cut flowers in any old container

A. A vase is defined as a 'vessel used as an ornament or for holding cut flowers', so strictly speaking, yes, anything could be a vase, an old bean can for instance. However, what we usually think01:00 Fri 08th Feb 2002

The snowdrops are out and the garden is starting to show signs of life. Is it time to get out there

A. Although the weather may still be pretty bleak, February is an important month in the garden, not least because if you get cracking now you will reap the benefits later. The usual provisos01:00 Fri 01st Feb 2002

These days we can get plants from the garden centre ready to go straight into the ground. Why bother to grow from seed

A. For the casual or occasional gardener then there is no reason why an occasional trip to the garden centre shouldn't suffice. But anyone who has really got the gardening bug knows that there is01:00 Fri 01st Feb 2002

A buyer's market

Last week, in response to a question from Ravenhair we looked at ways to ensure your property sold quickly and at the right place by making it stand out from the crowd. This week the shoe is on the01:00 Fri 01st Feb 2002

What are seed potatoes

A. Seed potatoes are specially grown tubers saved from last season's crop. Like seeds they are sown to produce this year's crop. Q. What is to stop you just saving some of your own crop and using01:00 Thu 24th Jan 2002

Hard sell or easy sell

Ravenhair recently asked for tips on how to sell a property fast while still getting a good price. According to the latest figures the housing market is showing little or no sign of slowing down and01:00 Thu 24th Jan 2002

Digging may be one of the most important jobs in the garden, but it is not exactly rocket science is it

A. No, but it isn't just a case of picking up a spade and turning over some earth either. Different types of soils and conditions demand different methods of digging, there are right and wrong01:00 Thu 24th Jan 2002

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