Think of the festive season and you probably think of being snuggled up inside by a roaring fire - but put a new gardening book on your Christmas wish-list, and you could be thinking of your spring planting too.
Whether you’re a grow-your-own beginner, or a more experienced enthusiast wanting to try something new, there’s a wealth of inspirational and educational horticultural reads out there.
Here’s a few of the best...
:: Of Rhubarb And Roses: The Telegraph Book Of The Garden, edited by Tim Richardson is published in hardback by Aurum, priced £25
The gardening glitterati past and present, including Bunny Guinness, Vita Sackville-West, Gertrude Jekyll and Fred Whitsey, have all featured in the Telegraph’s gardening column since it began in the 1930s. Editor and garden writer Tim Richardson has trawled through the archives to find some splendid anecdotes from many of the plantsmen and women who’ve written for the paper on subjects varying from ‘Conflict among the marrows’ to ‘Problems with the secateurs-in-handbag brigade’. This book is perfect for a gentle read, with a mince pie and a glass of mulled wine.
:: The Allotment Planner, by Matthew Appleby is published in hardback by Frances Lincoln, priced £14.99
If you fancy taking on an allotment in the new year, or already have one you’d like to develop further, this handy guide will help you plan your planting schemes and give you insights into how to make the most of your plot - bt that simply growing something new to eat or making money from your produce. Appleby, a blogging garden journalist on Horticulture Week, has written it in a month-by-month format, with bullet point ideas in many sections and practical advice throughout, along with blank pages within each month for your own notes. It’s an easy-to-follow guide with both modern and traditional ideas.
:: Clondeglass: Creating A Garden Paradise by Dermot O’Neill is published in hardback by Kyle, priced £25
This glorious book with beautiful, inspirational pictures, tells the story of the transformation of the walled garden at Clondeglass in Co. Laois, Ireland, from derelict, neglected wasteland to the stunning creation it is today. As the restoration is lovingly recorded, the author’s own personal battle with cancer is also charted as he explores the positive, therapeutic role gardening can play in recovering from a serious illness.
:: The New English Garden, by Tim Richardson is published in hardback by Frances Lincoln, priced £40.
This coffee table tome will definitely impress visitors coming for Christmas drinks. It explores an exceptionally rich period in English garden design, selecting 25 gardens which have gone through an intense phase of creativity and innovation in the last 20 years. The gardens chosen cover the wide range of styles.