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Cultural Concubine Blog

Neither here nor there…

Tag Archives: gardening

Springing...

Can’t wait for summer days spent picking wild flowers…

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Pretty straight forward...

the green…

The reason I have not been writing as much as usual lately is because I have spent most of my last two weeks genuflecting to nature.

I have been helping friends preparing their beautiful formal garden for a grand visit of the Dutch heritage organisation Heemschut together with the Dutch National garden association.
And after a late frost and an extremely dry spell there was plenty to do…

So I spent most of my time on my knees weeding and scraping…
There is something very humbling in caring for the grasses, scattering gravel layers and raking out loam paths.
Not the usual pruning and fine work, but actual graft, working like a builder on the bigger lines of a garden. (may be this is where it is in line with my ambitions in Building conservation)
It is quite amazing to find that the simplest straight lined lawn and gravel path encrusted pond would take so much more time in detailing than a fully planted border.

Off course all gardeners know that nature and straight lines are no common bedfellows.
But it is truly an amazing feeling to see an original design come back to life. Literally…

The house and garden are celebrating their 100th anniversary this year. And it was quite a privilege working on a Dutch interpretation of an English arts & crafts ‘Gesamtkunstwerk’.

Green hair day!

The strangest piece of work I did on the final evening before showtime…was the cutting back of some rusty brown fern heads. After all the raking, hoeing and pulling out nettles, cutting the frothy ferns with an elegant snip of a pair of gardeners scissors feels quite surreal…
Is this where gardeners meet hairdressers?!

Some time ago a friend of mine bought two amazing brass sculptured heads of Dali and van Gogh, open at the top…  (looking for pics of them, so you can see what I mean) Anyways…

Now it all comes together…

PS the collage on the right comes from an artist called: Able Parris

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Busy Lizzie...

Over the four years of living in London there is one main feature of British life that got away…

The Chelsea Flower Show.

The show features the greatest stars in garden design, splashing out on the most exquisite show gardens. Ranging from Australian and country gardens to an actual Stephen Hawking Garden…The Queen even came to have a look at that one…

More is better...

Then there is the Floral and Grand Pavilion showing off the thorough-bred plants of their race… Gold medals for the best in show are awarded by the RHS. As well as the bizzarrest new kinds you have ever seen.

The big themes this year seemed to be to get back to nature and planting to support bees and other fauna in the garden…

Best veggies in show, without parsnip tie regretfully...

Apart from the plants (like Cruft’s) there is the diversity of people to admire… You can easily recognise the owner of the ‘sweet pea’ nursery by his tie… (getting the right floral tie seems obligatory)

I truly regret that I didn’t have tickets this year, as these fly out well before the season…

The Mannequin doesnt look impressed...

This gardening show doesn’t only stay in the compounds of the exhibit itself. All kinds of shops around the council join in by planing greenery and bouquets of colours around their shop fronts… Even here the competition does not cease… making the window gardens reach great heights of complexity…

It is hard to describe how or why the art of gardening is so close to a Brit’s heart… It might be the undulating green lusciousness of this lovely island… Or may be the fact that you need something else than the weather to talk about…

Bumbling along...

As the rain pours down so frequently, at least you can raise your shoulders, pull an apologetic face and sigh: ‘At least it is good for the garden…’.

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