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The clove club: If you're planning on growing your own garlic and shallots this year, now's the time to get planting

In the kitchen, it's the best smell of all: garlic roasting with parsnips in the oven, garlic swishing around in a frying pan with strips of chicken and ginger, garlic quietly oozing its way through a curry of cauliflower and chick peas. There are reasons not to grow your own: it's easy to get hold of, cheap to buy, and the flavour of home-grown does not differ greatly from the stuff in the shops.

Weekend work: Time to take root cuttings

WHAT TO DO

Growing profits: The tiny Nymphaea thermarum lily, which is extinct in the wild, was stolen from Kew Gardens last week and could be worth thousands of pounds on the black market

Garden theft: Pots of gold

The theft of the world's smallest water lily from Kew Gardens last week might seem like a tiny matter but, says Tom Bawden, the market in stolen plants is growing

Anna Pavord: In praise of the humble greenhouse

The greenhouse has been a relatively recent discovery for our correspondent. Now Anna wonders how she ever managed without this home for fledgling plants, hippeastrums – and Edith, the pet agave

First things first: Emma Townshend reveals her gardening New Year's resolutions

Our gardening correspondent's opening resolution is to tidy up. After that, she can get down to her World Cup window boxes and learning how to cloud-prune...

Anna Pavord's A-Z of pests and problems: V and W are for ventilation, vine weevil and weeds

A virus can be bad news – or the reason your favourite tulip is so beautifully marked, says our green-fingered correspondent

Weekend work: Time to secure ricketty boundaries

WHAT TO DO

Look back in awe: The horticultural hits of 2013

Gardeners have a habit of going on about their planting disasters, instead of celebrating their successes, says our green-fingered correspondent...

Weekend work: Time to tend to Christmas roses

What to do

Anna Pavord: Last-minute gift ideas for the gardening fanatic in your life

If you’ve left your present purchasing to the eleventh hour, don’t fret, there’s often nothing better than a beautifully potted-up set of herbs, or a homemade bouquet garni

Frost-protected plants wrapped in fleece

Weekend work: Time to prune trained fruit trees

WHAT TO DO

Woolf Hall: Emma Townshend finds a new book about the author's final home irresistible - and she's not the only one

So I'm standing next to a woman in Belgravia Books (it's much friendlier and less posh than it sounds, and a tippety-top-class independent bookseller, to boot), and she's clutching this book, Virginia Woolf's Garden, to her chest.

Christmas gifts for the green-fingered: Stunning English gardens, Virginia Woolf's country bolt-hole and the art of growing bonsai

Tim Richardson's book The New English Garden (Frances Lincoln, £40) is the best kind of book to have by your side over Christmas. It is a big, lush production, superbly put together and is printed on thick paper that captures images beautifully. Most of the photographs are by Andrew Lawson (nobody is better) and they are well used, in luscious double spreads of reflecting pools and stilt hedges, bamboo groves and bananas, eremurus ("compulsory" in Noughties planting, says Richardson) and stipa.

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