Tuesday, 1 January 2013

New year's resignation?

A couple of weeks ago a small newspaper article caught my eye. It took our beloved gardening celebrities to task for giving the illusion that gardening is easy.  It appears that the likes of Titchmarsh and Fowler have been pressing their green thumb to their nose, wiggling their fingers and blowing us a raspberry. 

Whilst they have an army of helpers we, in awe of such passionate and trusting figures, have been fighting over 30th place on the local allotment waiting list to get a piece of the mucky action. Then, with our mitts on the keys and having claimed our precious we dance a middle class dance of joy only to ditch it at the first sign of hard work.


Now, I'm sure there are good genuine reasons for both wanting and giving up an allotment plot. The weather, for example.

It comes to something when even gardeners moan about the rain. Grim conditions have been just one of my many excuses for allowing my garden to get into the state that it has. 

On reflection, however, I have a nagging feeling that I'm just a little bit lazy. The slightest grey cloud becomes my excuse to hop it to the coffee shop.

So here I am on New Year's day. Do I want Titchmarsh chortling in my amateur face anymore? No. But is it his fault my garden is a mess? No.

Curse you filthy weather, damn you celebrities, gardening is about rolling up your sleeves. Yes, I too have written down the magic words 'I will spend more time in the garden'. But for once, I've followed this up with the courage to step out and take on the landscape of my own neglect.

Here is taster of what I faced this afternoon...

The whole garden was like this. A fallen tree, wind-strewn bird table and grow-houses, weeds amok, engulfing discarded pots and rubbish.

I took my saw to the tree and cut it to pieces, leaving a trunk that will find a curious ornamental look propped up against a wall, because I'm a bit weird like that.

Down came the cherry-coloured raspberry stalks, cut at the base ready to grow again at the hint of spring warmth.

Out came the mini hoe, decapitating young weedlings to reveal a juicy soil free to breathe again.

And my favourite hobby, deadheading my rose. Still healthy, vibrant and with a fresh bud. 

I wish I could show photos but my camera seems to have lost them. Honestly!

Gardening isn't easy, but if you like me face a daunting challenge out there, there is no better way than sticking on the wellies and getting dirty.

Happy new year, I hope you feel inspired and look out for a lot more from this blog...


elaine rickett said...

You are not on your own - I have hardly been out in the garden for weeks - I tend to lose my gardening mojo during the winter - and I certainly wouldn't dare to post any photos of it - and as for my greenhouse - shocking, simply shocking.

Lyndsey said...

Don't worry, at this time of year you can just read dozens of gardening manuals and imagine how your garden will look in the summer. Best to forget that you did the same last year and the results were underwhelming to say the least!

Hapless gardener said...

Hi Elaine, yes winter does strange things to mojos but be bold and get the camera out - it may spur you on. Perhaps not of the greenhouse just yet, perhaps get it camera-ready (I would love a greenhouse).

Lyndsey, you've tapped right into my habits, I am surrounded my books, dreaming of what is to come and forcefully forgetting last year. 'Underwhelming' is being far too kind! Hope you had a better year?

Anonymous said...

I still have to clear up the remains of my tomatoes. The crop was disastrous this year, barely a handful of edible ones that I could eat, everything else green and hard as nails. However, the squirrels loved them and provided comic value as i watched them staggering under the weight of hard large Italian plum varieties. So, I left the greenhouse and grow bag for them and now I am very lackadaisical about getting out there and clearing them. I prefer to think of it as a form of outside sculpture...

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.