Letter to Monty 11

Dear Montague ,

Have you been reading the debate on the thinkingardens website about the revamp of the RHS judgement process ? I have, but am too ignorant of the RHS and of 'show gardens' to be able to offer any constructive criticism. I have noticed however, that you seem to have a healthy suspicion of 'show gardens' and you have been conspicuous in your absence in the coverage of Chelsea by the BBC.

Just who are gardens for ?

The garden that came with this strange little box of a building - is my garden, its current state of horticultural imperfection is a reflection of me. Now if I was to learn more about horticulture and design and apply that knowledge to my garden would the result be 'better' and who would it be 'better' for ? ( I can hear you reply...you you fool !) Listen, I have every weed imaginable in the grass - so if I had a perfect lawn would I be happy ? No I would become obsessed every time I saw a 'weed' reappear. It has taken me years to relax and let the daisies, the clover and the bugloss grow merrily away along with the moss and the grass.

If I had perfect borders would I be happier? (er probably) but I know I don't have time for perfection.

So I have this vista, this soggy ground, this ever changing scene with trees trying to take over and butterfly friendly nettles encroaching and infiltrating the border. So I cut here and there, and redistribute clumps of grass and moss to cover bare patches of 'lawn'.

This is the garden, my garden - an expression of me as I am at this point in my life. So who gets to enjoy it ? Well, Sue, me, the dog, the chickens, the bees, butterflies, frogs, voles, mice, shrews, toads, hedgehogs, dragonflies and newts to name the creatures I can remember right now. All this and more in such a small garden.

My garden is a place for eating in when the sun shines, or a cup of tea when its not, for reading in, for drying clothes in, for picking fruit and falling asleep in.

That is all for now. Will write again soon.

Cheers Monty.

Post script. This is the tiny pond in the wrong place etc...but it supports all manner of life all thanks to 'Springwatch'  And gives a drinking place for birds, bees and wasps...and I have watched crows drop stale hunks of bread in it only to return later when its nice and moist...amazing.


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