Weekend Work: Time for planning


What to do

Thinking is often better than doing at this time of the year. By March, the To Do list will be so long, there will be no time for considering changes in the garden, looking hard at the basic design, taking decisions about fences, decks, pools or other features that may not be earning their keep as well as they should.

In small town gardens, rickety boundaries, often made of wooden larchlap or trellis, may be the single greatest problem in terms of the way the garden looks. If you do not have a secure background against which to pin climbers and wall shrubs, you can't prune them effectively, or tie them in properly. The shrubs mound up, they sag, they lean out from the boundary into the garden space, smothering whatever might be underneath them.

What to buy

Full of good intentions at the prospect of the coming year, I actually put one of those purposes into practice and sent off my Felco secateurs (I have two pairs, the No 2 and the No 5) to be serviced. They have come back with new blades, new springs and as shiny as when they were new. Servicing costs £19.99. Send your secateurs to Burton McCall at 163 Parker Drive, Leicester LE4 0JP (0116 234 4600). Don't forget to include your name and address as well.