How do we define ‘gardeners’? by Anne Wareham

This piece was originally published in 'The Garden' in May 2013. I struggled for a long time to accurately define what I think I am (this is not an invitation to enlighten me, thanks...) and I think this nails it. For me, and presumably for many other...

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Not all Glooom

Yes, I've been neglecting anyone who is kind enough to follow this blog. And right now I'm somewhat out of words, having been frantically book writing in every spare moment since June...words words words.. So, I'm cheating. Some pictures of Veddw in November. (though...

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Thinkingardens Supper

My apologies for those who want words - this is a post principally for the interest of those who came to the thinkingardens supper at Veddw, to discuss beauty and gardens. And much else besides. And eat cake....drink a little... #   .. and there are no pictures of the...

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Interesting feedback.

An Addition to the visit from Brockweir, Hewelsfield and St Briavels Garden Society's feedback The group leader now points out to me that I only asked  about the people who didn't appreciate the garden: the majority did like it. And she asked me to add a new last...

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I speak. For the Herefordshire Horticultural Hub.

I understand there will be WINE - and it's in the cause of the Herefordshire Horticultural Hub, so you can drink and feel very worthy if you come. It'll be great! I'll be being interviewed by Tristan Gregory. Topic: Are Gardens Art? Here's what happened - a review To...

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Pride and falling…

I was dead chuffed about this sight in June: - the euphorbia looked wonderful for weeks. I boasted about it and showed off. So serves me right - the euphorbia got rust. And because I don't just do the odd plant in amongst lots of other different ones, preferring...

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A praise poem to the place by Elizabeth Musgrave

This is a personal email to me from a friend, so perhaps doesn't belong as a review. But Elizabeth discusses and responds to that which is so important to me, and which is so much at the heart of the garden that I wanted it here. I think what she has to say is...

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Sitting

  We just bought a new seat . And put it together. (both of us - would have been impossible alone - but I took the picture so you can't see me slaving away.) We've always wanted a seat in the meadow, but there never seemed to be the right place. Then some cotoneasters...

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Gravel

I remember reading, many years ago, that one of the changes the death of Vita Sackville-West brought to Sissinghurst was that the paths had to be paved. The increase in visitors and wear and tear on - grass? - created the necessity. And changed the garden...

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Shadows

Light is the magic in a garden. The most wonderful garden in the world can struggle to excite in rain and gloom. And spring and autumn do special light: because the sun is low, suddenly unexpected things are illuminated.  And you can get dramatic shadows. Shadows are...

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Enter the Replacement

Just in case you wondered: this is really only of interest to family and friends - or in the unlikely event that someone was totally gripped by the birdbath saga - it's for them. It's the post script to this account of the Big Bird Bath Disaster. Now anyone who says...

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Hug a Slug by Anne Wareham

This piece was published in The Spectator on the 8th of March 2014 under the title 'The War on Beauty': Next week is ‘Hug a Slug’ week. Well, come on, you did believe it for a couple of seconds. We’ve all grown so used to the fog of humourless eco-rectitude that has...

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For Karen – a Walk in the Woods.

This is a special for my great friend Karen, (@wildelycreative ) who bivvies in this wood when she can, but it's been ages now...(and with apologies to the real Walker.) This is the other side of that gate into the woods: There are not many flowers out yet. The...

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Decay

Playing with a vase of anemones, over eight days......

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Digging damage.

We need a landscaper with a little digger and much drainage work doing. This relentless rain is beginning to make our yews suffer. The only way you can kill a yew, besides ruthless attack, is making it sit in water. And that is just what this weather is doing, despite...

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White Houses

It seems absolutely the done thing to paint your house white. In the last few years other colours have made a small inroad indoors, but if you look round the countryside you'll see that white for the exterior is still the thing. As if we'd just invented white wash....

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Here comes the Judge

Judging the Garden Media Guild 'Inspirational Book of the Year'  The word ‘inspirational’ gets barrowed around the garden world with great enthusiasm. It is rarely clear what it means, and it is rarely clear what the book, article, garden, blog post, plant...

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It has to go.

I've been told often enough now. That tree has to go and major reworking done. Most notable of the commentators is  Rory Stuart in his book What are Gardens For?, who described the 'formal avenue of top-worked Corylus colurna' which 'disappointingly,..leads nowhere.'...

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Just cut it down

Half of gardening is putting things in. Things then tend to grow themselves. Then we cut them down. Very simple, really, for a whole industry of advice giving. I have now been gardening at Veddw for over 25 years, so I think I can have confidence that what we do...

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Ladders

I don't advertise anything here except Veddw and my excellent Christmassy -present - book, The Bad Tempered Gardener, which are possibly excusable. Nor do I, in spite of endless tedious requests, sneak in little mentions of products under the guise of copy. However,...

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Why Highgrove?

OK. No names – right? Because the garden world is not robust enough for people to express their opinions openly and I don’t want to upset people more than I already have. But this was illuminating to me and so it may be to you. I was at a social event with garden...

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How does it happen?

above: The Cornfield Garden, Veddw Many years ago I designed and created the Grasses Parterre at Veddw. By which I mean I covered a small hillside with a design of hedges taken from the local Tithe Map of 1848 and then, with great difficulty, tears and expense, filled...

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The Reveal

No, this has not become bad reality tv. This is gardening in the raw. Least it feels like that. This is one time of year when hard work in the garden is unavoidable. The Crescent Border finishes the great Campanula lactiflora and Epilobium 'Stahl Rose' fest. I have to...

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Throw the Hoe

I’ve never used a hoe. I bought one originally, thinking it was sort of necessary, a gardener’s necessity. Since when it has just taken up space in the potting shed, like the equally useless riddle. It’s no good mulching and then trying to hoe in the mulch – and...

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