Saturday, 19 May 2012

Sting in the tale

'Every picture tells a story' goes the phrase uttered by people like me too lazy to come up with their own lines.

We all have stories about stinging nettles, and we all have views on dock leaves - friend or fraud?

When I was a young cub scout there was an annual camping trip where we were free to run about and explore the grounds. Yes you could earn your badge learning to cook, map read or make a fire. But to truly earn your stripes you had to run through 'Stinging Nettle Valley'. In shorts.

So when Jay at Hedgehog Gardens (@gardensinfo) offered me the following rogue I knew exactly where she was coming from. A fear ingrained from childhood:

Here you can see them like media wolves at a celebrity's door, howling over Jay's young veg bed, scenting the opportunity to scoop.

Admirably Jay wrote "Whilst I appreciate their use for nettle tonic and their attractiveness to wildlife there is only so much nettle soup one woman can bear! If I get many more stings whilst trying to keep them out of my veggies they'll be able to hear my screams in Scotland!!!"

Yet this photograph, for me, perfectly captures the battle between the weak and the strong, and the role us gardeners play in choosing who to protect and who to cut down; the battle between good and evil, which ultimately is at the heart of any good story.

Thank you Jay for this most appropriate of rogues. If anyone else has a rogue they wish to nominate for the Rogues Gallery, the drop me an email, or tweet @haplessgardener. And remember, I'm looking for a photo that captures an unseen beautiful side of the rogue, or indeed as above artistically shows them in their most menacing light.

For more rogues head over to the Gallery


frasermac834 said...

Anyone else get the impression of Zombies when they see the nettles?

Chants Cottage said...

Ha ha! In that case I'm afraid I must be living in the closing scenes of 'Night of the Living Dead'...

The Hapless Kitchen Gardener

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I only feel hapless because some people make it look easy to grow 10 ft marrows or a banquet of greens whereas my courgettes got nabbed by killer slugs and I only got one raspberry. So tips and stories from people less hapless than I are more than welcome. As a disclaimer though, none of my comments should be taken as expert advice on which you can rely! © Unless stated otherwise, and with the exception of guest content where that guest retains copyright, all photos and posts are the copyright of Tom Carpen and may not be used without permission.