Stop hungry mice taking the mickey
How can I properly protect my new sowings from mice? Sally P, via email
Mice can be a problem if you’re sowing veg seeds like beans and peas since they burrow into the ground to eat them before they sprout. The best way to avoid this is to propagate seeds indoors before planting out when shoots are a few inches tall. You can reuse old plastic bottles, with the bases cut off and caps removed, as covers.
Hold on to your Christmas party hats. It’s time for a whistle-stop tour of festive firs and splendid spruces so you know precisely where to be hanging your stars this holiday season.
A popular decoration since Prince Albert popped one up in Windsor Castle in the 1840s, we now buy more than eight million Christmas trees a year in the UK.
I’m not knocking artificial trees – they are low-maintenance, long-lasting and, when well decorated, it is difficult to spot the difference. But I always go for a real one.
Nothing gets you more in the festive mood, and they fill the room with the smell of pure Christmas.
When choosing your tree, it is best to buy one that is not yet netted so you can assess it for shape and symmetry. You want one that looks great from all angles and has plenty of branches for your decorations.
It’s also good to take your time sifting through individual specimens to find one that is not overly dry before you buy so you are not fighting a losing battle in your living room.
The secret is to saw an inch off the
As with cut flowers, trimming the trunk helps it hydrate