The aim of growing vegetables is, ultimately, to enjoy the harvested end product. Unfortunately, this is also the main objective of most other creatures in the garden who are dead set on eating their fair share, and often more, of the crops before you!

How we deal with this onslaught is both challenging and fascinating.

The attack comes from all angles – from the air, underground, in broad daylight and in the depths of night, and from large mammals to microscopic organisms. We have various weapons available to us, from good husbandry and hygiene, biological pest control and natural predators to toxic chemical sprays – but which methods we choose will not only affect our own small corner of the country but the environment as a whole.

The choice is ours…