While the borders are still a bit sparse, it is a good opportunity to see what needs to be done, either removing a plant or two completely or transplanting it to another area of the garden.

It is always useful to perhaps make notes through the summer, when the garden is looking its best, to remind you what plants are not performing as well as you would like and then take action to deal with it now.

On the few nice days we have had, I’ve had to remove some rosemary and santolina from the beach garden, as they had become very woody and leggy over the ten years they have been there.

In their place, I have decided to plant some of my large agaves.

Normally, I keep them in containers and move them undercover for the winter to stay dry. The older I get, the harder it is to lift them, so decision made, the larger ones went in the ground and hopefully they will be OK.

It is generally the wet they dislike, but being on chalk should help that.

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It has been so bitterly cold outside in recent weeks, with lots of biting winds too.

Needless to say, I have not been out doing too much heavy-duty gardening, just enjoying what I can see from the house.

One of the main tasks has been to keep filling the bird feeders with fat balls. I’ve never been aware of them needing a top up so frequently before. I had a large order last autumn and have now had to order some more for fear of running out.

Regular walks up the garden to check on the temperatures in the greenhouse have been top of the list too. So far, all has seemed well with me being able to maintain a temperature of about nine degrees in there through the very cold spells.

As the garden comes to life again, it’s time to consider pruning shrubs and climbers as well as evergreen hedges.

I’ve got many low trimmed hedges and divisions between my various garden rooms, so have to trim fairly regularly to keep them as I want them.

They were all extensively trimmed back in the autumn but are now beginning to show signs of needing a slight trim back again.

All my cutting from now until the autumn, is generally done with secateurs, to keep the hedges looking good for visitors.

Remember that, if you usually have birds nesting in your hedges, it is vital to do what you have to do now, before they start making their nests this year.

Read more of Geoff’s garden at www.driftwoodbysea.co.uk