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I have just enjoyed harvesting - broad beans and "Swift" potatoes for Sunday lunch, so much more enjoyable than carting them from the One thing many people forget when they grow there own food, perhaps because the superior taste puts everything else into the shade, is that gardeners who do so are reducing the deficit the country now has, or the "Balance of Payments" as we used to call it.
Happy Marion, I always enjoy reading your contributions. My Faither is partially sighted and they moved to a house just along the road from us last year. Means I have two gardens to work in, which is brilliant, but the main thing for choosing plants for their garden is the scent so that he can enjoy it too. They have a patio next to the house which is the only wheelchair friendly part of the garden, so the planting farthest away also has the brightest/strongest colours we can find. I love the research into which plants would suit, almost as much as the gardening itself. Learning something new all the time ... can't beat it!
I started gardening when I was knee high to a grasshopper, I spent hours with my father in the garden working in the flower boarders but particularly in the vegetable and fruit plots. I was really proud of my very own little plot. I have so many happy memories. I remember my father picking up a snail one morning and chucking over into the neighbour's garden, then he turned round and gave me a really cheeky smile! At the end of the gardening day we would both go into the shed where my father brewed his own wines and we would have a little sample! Now that I am all grown up I have my own garden to tend and I enjoy every second I spend in it.
Too hot to do any strenuous gardening in Bristol this morning but I have pottered about tying up my clematis and sweet peas and my one and only sunflower which is now 1.60 metres tall and outgrowing its bamboo stake so it will be tied to the drainpipe next time! How is everyone getting on with their freebie seeds from GW?
Hi everyone... this is my first post here, so hello! I don't think I was particularly keen on gardening as a youngster... I was more interested in playing in the garden than taking any notice of what was planted there! I do remember eating quite a lot flowers... my Mum was pleased, I think, that it was mostly the daisies in the lawn! As a teenager I had a spider plant which went through about 10 generations of potting on the plantlets before I finally gave it away to someone! But I was also given my first cactus... Over the years at uni and a couple after that I lived in flats so there wasn't much opportunity... although my windowsill cactus collection was growing and still is now (much to my boyfriend's dismay)! Finally, a year and a half ago, I moved in to a house with a garden (a rather overgrown one). A March weekend last year, which involved a lot of hard work, saw the removal of most of the unwanted plantlife and the digging of new veggie beds and since then I haven't looked back! I really didn't know that I would enjoy it so much... now, although I try not to, I always end up in the garden rather than doing chores inside. And a lot of time is spent daydreaming of a new, far bigger, garden of the future!


Wow, what a fascinating collection of stories. Thank you everyone for contributing, I have enjoyed reading all of them (with two notable exceptions - tsk). Kat - thanks for sharing your experiences, I hope your garden continues to help heal your grief. I love that quote from Rudyard Kipling - what a fantastic rule to live by. Kate
I have a sneaking suspicion Anne Wareham and I would get along famously as I garden with shameless shortcuts and have been known to add mulch rather than bother to weed for an instant fix. However, Anne is a professional and successful gardener whereas I am trained but choose to ignore received wisdom! I recently sat in on a gardener's question time recording and joined everyone in gasps of horror as one lady confessed to sticking newly delivered bare root roses in water until they rotted. On returning home I remembered to my shame that there was a mouldering plastic bag of same roses behind the potting bench, and had sat there for FOUR months! Incredibly they survived and are now in full growth despite only being heeled in as I was short of time. Oh dear... On a happier note, my interest in plants came after me and my fellow nurses used to decorate our bicycle baskets to celebrate chelsea week and cycled between hospital buildings trailing petals behind us! This progressed to decorating our children's ward with elaborate arrangements which of course was against hospital rules. The ward clerk used to phone to tip us off that matron was on her way over and we would stash our 'garden'in the linen cupboards! I am passionate about plants and somehow my shoddy ways have produced what is in my eyes, a garden which I adore and is very pretty.
i am lucky to live in Hertfordshire with the countryside just minutes from my doorstep, and would disappear down the lanes with siblings and friends to pick blackberry's as a child, showering mum with fruit even though we already had fruit bushes and trees in the garden, we even filled the bath up with scrumped apples and she went potty!we had a large garden and my brother would grow veg, and we would wrap apples and pears in paper to store in the pantry for lovely pies and crumbles, we kept a few chickens back then and the first thing i did in my new large garden was get 4 chickens! we have an allotment nearby for the last6 years and i wouldn't know what to do with myself if i couldn't get outside and put my hands in the soil!
Hubby and I inherited a pond when we moved in our house. It was dirty, murky and unsightly. We took the task of tidying up and clean the pond. We enjoyed doing that project together that we ended up doing the whole garden. We are both novices as far as gardening is concerned but we took great joy when the we viewed the first blooming of our flowers or a few cherry tomatoes popping out of the plant. It's fun having to do it myself more so sharing the whole experience with my husband. :)
my grampas ancesters were gardener /labourers in cheshire till the industrial revelotion. and carried on gardening .when not working.and thats why i am too .xxx thanks grampa
What a lovely blog Kate! And yes, I got the bug young. I gardened with my grandad, had my own plot and a small pond in my parents' garden and had a job at a plant nursery as a teenager. And like you, I grew countless plants in my room at university. Gardening's more important than ever to me now, and I steal every possible moment I can to be outside with my plants (I've just had to drag myself inside to get on with some work, which is a pain). I'm encouraging my daughter, Ida, to be outside as much as possible, so it'll be interesting to see if she follows in my footsteps. Or maybe she'll be like her mum who hates most things about gardens apart from sunbathing in them - we'll see...
I never really did any gardening until I remarried in my mid fourties and my new husband introduced me to gardening. What a wonderfully soothing hobby!I am fortunate enough to live in South Carolina, and can garden all year long.My husband refers to my garden as "My science project". I think its neat to have Artichoke plants, even if they are very strange looking.I am having the best time trying to grow everything, except beets, but I"m not giving up. Janice
My neighbours forced me into gardening by removing their leylandii trees which had prevented me from planting anything else in our tiny garden! Unfortunately this had the effect of taking away all our privacy in the garden and I had to learn very quickly about trees! From there I have developed an absolute passion for gardening and am so excited seeing things grow (especially my beloved new trees!). I have totally transformed our garden in 6 months and am looking forward to it maturing over the years. It is, indeed a wonderful pastime...
Hello All, I have to confess that as a lad I hated gardening as I was mad on football and fishing and generally running around outside! From the first time I went fishing as a lad (age 8) I had an absolute fascination in ponds and wildlife which I would sit and watch for hours (and draw plans of ponds I would one day own!!). At the age of 23 I bought my first house with my partner (now wife) and the first thing I did was dig a big pond to keep fish. From this initial pond I got interested in marginal and pond side planting and my love of plants and gardening just kept on growing until I find myself here 21years later and enjoying it more and more as each day passes by... The only thing that hasn't changed is that in all three of the houses we have owned the very first thing I have done after moving in is dig a bigger pond for my beloved fish (some now over 20yrs old!!) LOL Higgy
Kate Saw my speckled wood butterfly. You said you thought the area I left unattended for awhile. It might be there. I was amazed to find it. What with my bumblebees and a nest of some form of wasp in my cranebill patch,(hoping my bumblebees donot get attacked by the wasps)I am really getting into the gardening bug. I have never been a gardening sort of person, but certainly getting to realise what a lovely past-time it can be. I am now going to check, that, I donot have the wax moth in my garden, read how to trap it with a pop bottle containing water, sugar and a fermenting banana skin.


I was never interested when I was growing up.My father had a small market garden and so I was used to being around it.I would think nothing of going into the greenhouse and sit there picking grapes off the vine.All that organic fruit and veg I took for granted.These last few years I have changed into a budding enthusiast but I only have a small back yard.I've developed a passion for gardening and love sitting out early in the morning before work just starring at my plants.God I must sound sad but it really makes me happy! e
Looking at the sunflower picture reminded me to measure my one and only - only tp find at nearly two metres it is showing yellow petals! At least I know now that there is plenty of flower-inducing chemicals in my worm tea. Nettle concoction would have been better. Can't wait to see how big the flower is!
Hi all yet again another great weekend, Saturday did the garden totally chilled out after a week of the alarm clock. Sunday went to a friends little girls baptism,got back mid afternoon put kettle on make a cuppa and sit outside chill and listen to the birds. What more could anyone want.
Hi Kate, well this year i have put in gladioli bulbs and yes they are about 14ins high BUT they have not flowered yet, is to early, has it been to wet, OR do they not flower the first year,?????? Help Please, I looked forward so much to have them in my garden,:-(
When my Mom passed away I found my garden a great comfort. I had always kept it tidy but didn't really take a great interest in it. It got me out of the house and provided me with something I could do that would relieve my grief even for a short time. Since that sad episode in my life I have loved my garden and the pleasure it gives, the only drawback is the amount of money I spend on it, but as far as I'm concerned it's worth every penny.