Quotes of the Year
Since its launch
in April 2000, Greenfingers' magazine has regularly
featured articles by some of the UK's most well-known
and respected garden writers. Their articles have been
humorous, insightful, sometimes provocative, and always
enjoyable to read. We've selected some of our favourite
moments from the last nine months.
"Why have a busload
of dumpy hausfrau hyacinths when you could have a choir
of elegant delicate tulips? You'll say the hyacinths
are perfumed perhaps? Well, you are right. By and large
tulips have no perfume to speak of. But I can live without
that, when they offer so much else. Who'd run off with
a hausfrau just because she smelled good?"
Stephen Anderton expresses a preference where spring
bulbs are concerned read
"Several weeks ago
I turned 35. Not a big deal in itself perhaps, but on
the same day I took up ownership, or rather became custodian,
of an allotment. These two events individually don't
amount to much but look at them together and suddenly
I've turned into Arthur Fowler. So no more dissing and
larging it with my posse and not doing up the laces
on my Nikes, I'm off down the allotments in my wellies
to sip sherry with my new friends and discuss the merits
of Axminster carpet as a mulch."
Andy Sturgeon, allotment owner read
"As a child I loathed
parsnips - they sat on my plate, with the Sunday lunch,
looking pale and insipid, boiled and uninteresting.
No disrespect to my mother's cooking, but they didn't
do it for me, not until I reached adulthood and my own
kitchen. Now the humble parsnip is big time back on
the menu, but in a different guise altogether!"
Fiona Lawrenson comes round to the charms of the
"I've seen grown
men cry over the sight of a giant pumpkin, and serious
money can be won and lost on these amazing vegetables.
If you don't feel up to growing show-standard pumpkins,
but fancy making your own Hallowe'en lantern or, more
in my line, a delicious, hearty soup, then take note.
Pumpkins are cool and in vogue."
. and is rather taken with pumpkins read
"It became an adventure
from which nothing was stopping me except my own ignorance."
Rosemary Verey on discovering the pleasures of gardening read
"Stay gardening wild
and sing a few songs while you're doing it!"
Michaela Strachan's gardening philosophy read
"Hacking back may
give immediate satisfaction to the hacker but it may
be doing a lot of unnecessary damage to the shrub."
Christopher Lloyd advises against using gardening
as anger therapy. read
"Who, now, can resist
that glittery black foliage, as black as you find on
any plant, and those bright red flowers. It is pure
Shirley Bassey, with the emphasis on the lipstick."
Stephen Anderton gets hot under the collar thinking
about Dahlia 'Bishop of Llandaff' read
"Mulching may be
one of those odd words that sounds funnier the more
times you say it, but there is nothing better for the
garden than a good old mulch."
Joe Swift on the linguistics of soil improvement read
"I wonder if some
plants fail to become popular because of their tongue
twisting names. Could Abeliophyllum distichum be one
Rosemary Verey ponders plant popularity read
"I could run on but
you get the idea. We southerners don't have it all our
own way." Christopher Lloyd concedes that gardening
in Scotland may have its advantages read
"For an instant party
atmosphere try buying a bag of a hundred tea lights
and placing them all over the garden in clear or coloured
Joe Swift with a quick and fun idea for summer evenings
- remember them? read
"Instead of letting
the fact that it's now dark when you go to work and
when you get back get you down, concentrate on one or
two little things you can do or buy to cheer you up
in preparation for the season of good cheer. It might
just be a fern for your bathroom - or it could be the
satisfaction of buying a new rose bush and getting out
there and digging it in."
George Plumptre with some thoughts on conquering
those winter blues read
"Many friends think
it's because I'm too busy or too lazy to get my gardening
gloves on and spend hours on my hands and knees weeding.
And while there might be just an ounce of truth in that
accusation, it's also because my aim is to attract as
much wildlife into the garden as possible."
Michaela Strachan argues that there's a reason why
her garden looks untended. read
"Think of a plant
as a juggler, being planted and getting roots settled
at the same time as producing leaves and flowers is
a bit like having three balls in the air at once."
George Plumptre argues for autumn plantings read
"'Ground Force' is
in its 28th series. It's on once a day, except Sunday
when it's on twice. And there are now plans for a dedicated
Ground Force Channel available on cable so you can watch
it all day, every day."
Andy Sturgeon foresees a rather terrifying tv future
for us all read
"In between having
a conversation with Felix-from-next-door and constantly
rescuing Alex from the tree ("duck duck" translating
as "stuck stuck"), I managed to do some planting. Out
went the packet instructions and ideas about colour
co-ordination, in went the bulbs willy-nilly, with winter
pansies plonked on top."
Our New Gardener plants up.read
reprinted with premission from Greenfingers.com