Music: Live - God plays a mean guitar

BRUCE COCKBURN HQ DUBLIN

Words: cabotage, n.

RICHARD BRANSON'S guise as a perennial student rebounded at JFK when the pilot announced that, with more passengers than expected, take- off would be delayed while extra fuel was put in: this recalls undergraduate whip-rounds to get a clapped-out Ford Anglia to the pub and back - and was duly reinforced by the blow-out of an engine over Boston and a long night on the tarmac.

Gardening: This week

I have a Gardena sprinkler which keeps getting jammed so that it only waters one section of its potential arc. If this happens, soak the sprinkler in a sink of water to displace any grit or soil and pour some oil over any moving parts

Country & Garden: No need to get into a bindweed

Successful weeding depends on knowing where and when to strike, and doing it with conviction. By Ursula Buchan

Letter: Hanging basket case

Sir: May I suggest that it is now time for us to acknowledge that the era of hanging baskets is coming to an end ("A hanging offence", 12 June)?

Garden: Give me the flax

Garden varieties of the linen plant, a firm favourite with Ursula Buchan, come in many colours and, massed, create a beautiful summer spread

Rowing: Coode makes golden debut

GREAT BRITAIN won the first round of the FISA World Cup here with the men's four and the women's pair notching victories, while two other crews won silvers and one a bronze.

Gardening: Attack of the killer weed

The Kiwi cousin of the Bitter Cress weed is threatening to strangle our gardens. Ursula Buchan offers advice on how to identify and eradicate this deadly plant

Gardening: Rise of the demon seed

An aggressive alien weed is causing consternation in nurseries across Britain.

Cricket: Powell excels as Lara watches

West Indies 224-6 Surrey 169-8

Football: Blue skies are here again for Coventry

BY JON CULLEY Derby County 0 Coventry City 0 Attendance: 32,450

Killing weeds; gardening

There is no point in pretending that weeds and wild flowers are the same thing, says Sarah Raven. Bindweed, ground elder, nettles and brambles make gardeners' lives a misery, and should be eradicated

Garden fertiliser `waste of money'

GARDEN FERTILISERS are a waste of money, according to a study released yesterday.

Pop: Mercury rev

One of the biggest surprises of last year was the commercial coming- good of perennial underachievers Mercury Rev (right) from Buffalo, New York. Their splendid Deserter's Songs album appeared like a rash over most end-of-year polls, topping several in the process. This quick return trip to the UK capitalises on that album's success and ends with a prestigious headlining spot at one of the NME Premier Award nights at London's Astoria. Though the album is a polished affair, their gigs still include some marvellous improvisation. Wulfrun Hall, Wolverhampton (01902 552121) Mon; Junction, Cambridge (01223 511511) 17 Jan; Wedgewood Rooms, Portsmouth (01705 863911) 19 Jan; Fleece & Firkin, Bristol (0117-927 7150) 20 Jan; Astoria, London W1 (0171- 434 0403) 21 Jan

Gardening: The seeds of triumph

Cheerful nasturtiums, unruly snapdragons, exotic zinnias ... Anna Pavord plans ahead for summer flowers
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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Some are reformed drug addicts. Some are single mums. All are on benefits. But now these so-called 'scroungers’ are fighting back

The 'scroungers’ fight back

The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
Amazing video shows Nasa 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action

Fireballs in space

Amazing video shows Nasa's 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action
A Bible for billionaires

A Bible for billionaires

Find out why America's richest men are reading John Brookes
Paranoid parenting is on the rise - and our children are suffering because of it

Paranoid parenting is on the rise

And our children are suffering because of it
For sale: Island where the Magna Carta was sealed

Magna Carta Island goes on sale

Yours for a cool £4m
Phone hacking scandal special report: The slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

The hacker's tale: the slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

Glenn Mulcaire was jailed for six months for intercepting phone messages. James Hanning tells his story in a new book. This is an extract
We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

Child abusers are not all the same, yet the idea of treating them differently in relation to the severity of their crimes has somehow become controversial
The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

For instance, did Isis kill the Israeli teenagers to trigger a war, asks Patrick Cockburn
Alistair Carmichael: 'The UK as a whole is greater than the sum of its parts'

Alistair Carmichael: 'The UK as a whole is greater than the sum of its parts'

Meet the man who doesn't want to go down in history as the country's last Scottish Secretary
Legoland Windsor's master model-makers reveal the tricks of their trade (including how to stop the kids wrecking your Eiffel Tower)

Meet the people who play with Lego for a living

They are the master builders: Lego's crack team of model-makers, who have just glued down the last of 650,000 bricks as they recreate Paris in Windsor. Susie Mesure goes behind the scenes
The 20 best days out for the summer holidays: From Spitfires to summer ferry sailings

20 best days out for the summer holidays

From summer ferry sailings in Tyne and Wear and adventure days at Bear Grylls Survival Academy to Spitfires at the Imperial War Museum Duxford and bog-snorkelling at the World Alternative Games...
Open-air theatres: If all the world is a stage, then everyone gets in on the act

All the wood’s a stage

Open-air productions are the cue for better box-office receipts, new audiences, more interesting artistic challenges – and a picnic
Rand Paul is a Republican with an eye on the world

Rupert Cornwell: A Republican with an eye on the world

Rand Paul is laying out his presidential stall by taking on his party's disastrous record on foreign policy
Self-preservation society: Pickles are moving from the side of your plate to become the star dish

Self-preservation society

Pickles are moving from the side of your plate to become the star dish
Generation gap opens a career sinkhole

Britons live ever longer, but still society persists in glorifying youth

We are living longer but considered 'past it' younger, the reshuffle suggests. There may be trouble ahead, says DJ Taylor