WEEKEND WORK

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The Independent Online
Wind, one of the gardener's worst enemies, has been flexing its muscles again recently. Tie up any climbers that have been torn from their moorings and secure new growths of climbing roses, solanum and the like.

Lay new turf where necessary so that the grass can settle before the winter. Dig over the ground to be turfed, getting rid of all weeds. Rake the earth to a fine tilth. Use a line to keep the turves straight and lay them so the joints are staggered, like brickwork. Sift soil into any gaps and firm down by banging with a rake head.

Finish planting spring bedding plants such as wallflowers, polyanthus and forget-me-nots. The latter make a pretty under-carpet for tulips, especially the white-flowered `White Triumphator' or the stubby, double `Angelique'.

Clean up the ground between strawberry rows, getting rid of weeds and unwanted plants that have rooted themselves. Mulch between the rows with well-rotted compost or manure.

Plant lilies, which are best moved, like snowdrops, just after they have finished flowering. The martagon lily is a hardy, lime-tolerant species that will thrive in sun or shade. Put the bulbs about 9in apart and 4in deep, with a sprinkle of sharp sand under them to deter underground slugs. Mulch in spring with compost or leafmould. The ordinary type has dirty purple flowers with ginger anthers, but there is also a lovely white form.

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