It isn’t necessary to have a separate garden or bed in which to grow herbs. Many herbs can easily be incorporated into even the most formal of decorative gardens and will benefit their neighbours.

When people think about growing herbs, they often think they will need a separate bed for them, probably one laid out in a formal pattern such as a wheel or checkerboard arrangement. A special herb garden isn’t the only, or even the best, way of growing herbs.

Just as with…

In the wild, fallen trees provide a home for many creatures. It’s easy to recreate this environment on a small scale in our own gardens

Building a log pile is one of the quickest, easiest, cheapest and most effective ways of attracting wildlife into the garden. Not only will it attract the creatures who’ll use the log pile for food or shelter, but also the larger creatures who eat them.

This would be a great…

Bring some of your garden inside with these home-made Christmas decorations.

1. Make delicate garlands by threading holly leaves complete with a berry each and small puffs of cotton wool (to represent snow) onto thread. These can be suspended from the ceiling, draped along curtain poles or wrapped around the tree.

2. Make wreaths by affixing evergreens, small fir cones and…

Delicious, meat-free alternatives to the traditional roast turkey Christmas dinner

1. Stilton and cranberry soufflé. Adapt any cheese soufflé recipe by substituting stilton for the suggested cheese and put a layer of cranberry sauce in the bottom of the dish before filling with soufflé mixture.

2. Crimbo Wellington. Puff pastry filled with peeled coarsely chopped chestnuts, parsnip puree and creamed…

Hedgehogs are cute little creatures, but that’s not the only reason for wanting them in your garden.

Hedgehogs used to be a common sight in our gardens and hedgerows, but sadly they are now in decline. They are forced out of their natural habitats as the area of natural woodlands steadily reduces. This means they are becoming increasingly reliant on gardens in urban areas. Sadly here they…

Carol singing is a popular and fun way for clubs and other organizations to raise money — but you have to do it right!

1. Sing carols

Actual real carols that people will know and like. ‘We Wish You a Merry Christmas’ is not a carol, even if you do make the huge effort of singing more than one verse. ‘All I Want For Christmas’ is a great song, but it’s not a carol.

Learn more than…

Patsy Collins

Author, gardener, photographer, cake eater and campervanner from the south coast of England.

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