Tall Paul

Latest posts by Tall Paul

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Moans about GW

Posted: 12/09/2013 at 12:52

My original point was that the apparently random publication of a critical letter may be softening us up for some changes to come. One swallow does not make a summer (or whatever the correct saying is) of course and I do remember there being many complaints when the Toby years started.  It just occurred to me that there might be something planned. There has been a noticeable lack of Rachael and Joe recently, GW is now just Carole and Monty.  As many have said above, half an hour isn't enough to cater for all tastes.  Beechgrove adds a new element but it does overlap to some degree, there is no deliberate intention to cover different needs apart from slanting things towards a northern climate.  I think Monty is a brilliant broadcaster, very thought provoking and interesting but somehow lacking the common touch that Geoff and co. had.

Moans about GW

Posted: 10/09/2013 at 12:10

I see there have been letters in the Radio Times moaning about GW, specifically its failure to cater for experienced gardeners.  I think this falls into the "you can't please all the people all the time" category but it is reminiscent of the letter writing campaign which ended up in the ousting of Toby a few years ago.  I'm not a conspiracy theorist but wonder at the apparently random timing of this letter.  Is there something afoot?

I find that with national broadcasting of Beechgrove the focus is not so intense on GW.  I often enjoy Beechgrove more but it's good to have both. My main complaint is not about content but the irritating disruption of GW (and to a lesser extent Beechgrove) by sporting events.  Surely in the era of multiple channels and red buttons something could be sorted so everyone gets to see what they want.

Designing a Garden Centre from scratch

Posted: 07/07/2013 at 16:45


Last time I bought my seed potatoes and onion sets. Also some tulips (it was a few months ago!).

Lead farmer,

I agree with your vision.  That's why I am a big fan of Barnsdale.  They sell most of the plants you see in the demonstration gardens in the nursery.  They even have a stand as you exit the gardens with "plants that are looking good now" for sale. They are also reasonably priced and great quality.  As it is only 30 miles or so away from me the plants all seem to do well in my garden, presumably owing to the climate being similar, also because they are good plants.


Designing a Garden Centre from scratch

Posted: 03/07/2013 at 15:21

I've just been to a very big garden centre near me.  More of a small shopping mall really as there are franchises in there for shoes, clothes, cards and so on.  I had a nice lunch in the cafe, which is huge.  I came away having only bought a birthday card however as the plants seemed really expensive. There were actually coaches full of older people arriving for a day out. There are several GCs like this around here and I sometimes drop in to one in my gardening clothes when I need something.  The looks I get from people in their Sunday best is very amusing, they don't look like they ever go near a garden, let alone get their hands dirty!

I recently discovered a small nursery near me too.  It has probably been there for ever but I didn't know it existed until a flyer came through my door.  The plants were obviously mostly self propagated, good quality and reasonably priced.  The proprietor was working away potting on but was very friendly and helpful.  I bought quite a bit of stuff and will definitely go back. I imagine it is quite hard to make a living out of this sort of place though when you have to compete with the slick chains and supermarkets but this is the kind of place I like to spend my money in.

Good luck if you decide to give it a go!

William Morris principle?

Posted: 07/06/2013 at 09:05

I think the Morris Principle is the one already mentioned.  Morris was also passionate about rural craftsmanship and good, simple design which was both pleasing and functional.  All of these are very applicable to creating a productive and attractive garden.

Rotary Sieve

Posted: 02/06/2013 at 18:25

Thanks Figrat,


I bought the Clarke one in the end and am already finding it a real boon.  My newly planted border is beautifully mulched with home compost which is better than bought in terms of texture.  For any one else thinking of buying one the Clarke one is very sturdy and well mde but mine came with no assembly instructions, not a problem for most of you out there but caused me a bit of head scratching!  It is available from Machine Mart to collect which saves postage and is £10 cheaper than Amazon if you have a branch which is handy.

Rotary Sieve

Posted: 28/05/2013 at 18:20

I'm thinking of investing in one of these.  Two seem to be available on-line.  The cheaper, unbranded one, is green and costs around £30 from Amazon etc. The other is a Clarke one, costing around £40.  The on-line reviews seem to agree that the cheaper model is a bit flimsy so I'm leaning towards the Clarke one.  I can't find one locally so will probably have to mail-order it.  I want it to sieve my home made compost, which I currently have to do with a hand sieve (or riddle as my Dad calls them).  This is very boring and time-consuming not to mention ache inducing.  So I'm looking to the rotary one to be quicker and easier to use.  Any information gratefully received.

Gardens to visit

Posted: 09/05/2013 at 20:01

Might take you a bit longer than 45 minutes but can't recommend Barnsdale (near Oakham in Rutland) strongly enough.  Plenty of seats and quite compact.  Also the Garden Organic gardens at Ryton-on-Dunsmore, near Coventry are good.  Both have decent caffs and good plant sales too,

What does Monty think?

Posted: 01/05/2013 at 17:21

Going off on a slight tangent; I'm reading Monty's "Ivington Diaries" at present.  It is a lovely, poetic book and gives a real insight into his personal  philosophy and a vivid picture of how he built his garden up from a rough field.  It also shows what an eccentric gardener he is, which is perhaps why he divides opinion so much on GW.  He really does have a very individual take on gardening and pretty much everything else.


Beechgrove Garden Goes National.

Posted: 27/04/2013 at 18:13

I agree with Obelixx about the fast forward button on the A to Z, although I don't avoid Joe or Toby.  They seem to be Marmite presenters.  The James Wong stuff is of little interest to me. I also find Carole Kirkwood a bit irritating.  Not sure why we need her to say "thanks Geoff" when a 20 year old clip of Geoff Hamilton has been shown! Some enjoyable bits on it though.

1 to 10 of 30

Discussions started by Tall Paul

Moans about GW

Letters in the Radio Times complaining about GW 
Replies: 26    Views: 3055
Last Post: 12/09/2013 at 21:25

Rotary Sieve

Views Sought 
Replies: 3    Views: 1795
Last Post: 02/06/2013 at 18:47
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