Sunday, February 13, 2011

Gardening Friends

Click to Enlarge Photos

I've been thinking about Anny Scoones and wondering if Glamorgan Farm  is prospering. We're friends you know...I've lived with her in spirit on her heritage farm near Victoria Airport, as she struggled "restoring the old barns, log by log" as she writes in her book, "Home, Tales of a Heritage Farm". Anny doesn't know me of course, but I feel I know her. It's that way with authors, who share a personal story that touches you, they become your friends.

While reading "The $64.00 Tomato" I murmured to William Alexander, "I did just that very same thing"... spent so much for soil and worked so hard to make things right and by the end of it, calculated my tomato likely cost $64.00 as well. Oh we are good friends William and I, lamenting our finances while laughing our socks off at the ridiculousness of it all.

Now, Charles Dudley Warner, "My Summer in a Garden", was a little harder to get to know. You see, he was born in 1829 and died in 1900...a bit of an "ages" difference there! He does contemplate whether women should have the vote but, he shared his trials and tribulations with me, a mere woman, and do you know, his challenges are the same as mine!! Oh how we suffered together but oh how we rejoiced as well.

Beverley Nichols was a delight..just the best friend ever..witty, brilliant, colorful and well...the type of man you don't mind going to bed read of course. I have only one of his books "Garden Open Today" but how I enjoyed it. "Love makes things grow the greenest" he states...wouldn't you agree?

Have you read Des Kennedy and his first book "Crazy About Gardening"? He begins by stating "all gardeners are nuts" and we only have to "ask a person who doesn't garden but lives with someone who does"... I will tell you honestly, I read this book and laughed till I cried. He is rather brilliant but I do wish Des had written more books like this. The rest were good..but...well, as friends, we grew apart, sadly.

Now you know Monty Don? He's kinda handsome..yup...married, sorry. But, he has his struggles let me tell you. Just read "The Jewel Garden", 'a story of despair and redemption'. Oh...been there Monty...despair, redemption..oh we could be such close confidants but..well...I know you are busy, traveling the world visiting eighty gardens. You're tired..I understand.

One of the last friends I would like to introduce is Charles American in England. I particularly enjoyed "More Papers from The Potting Shed".  Regarding Christopher Lloyd for instance..Charles states that "Lloyd proved over and over that he not only knew more about horticulture than almost anyone else, but was also prepared to learn experiment, challenge, break rules".  Well isn't that just me all over))), the experiment and challenge bit, definitely not the knowing about horticulture. Am I  like Christopher Lloyd even a titchy bit??..... Charles, you are too kind.

Books ARE the best, friends.

Thanks Garden inspired.


  1. Ain't that the case! I'm reading a gardening book at present and feel like I know everything about the author and her family. She would be surprised I think.

  2. I love your photo's! The stack of books warms my heart. Books are such a big part of our life and even more so, during the winter months. The other day Andy gathered a bunch of books he had received for Christmas, as well as others he had been reading. He stacked them up under the window and said he was planning to put them away. I asked him to leave the stack where is was ..... books warm up the room.

    Your tomato picture looks so yummy!!


  3. What lovely thoughts Brenda.. I too feel the same about William Alexander and his $64 tomato - what tomato grower in this climate couldn't relate!? Plus, I loved 'We Made a Garden' by Margery Fish, which followed the gardening adventures of Fish and her husband who spent about 20 years (beginning in 1937) crafting a garden together (not always in agreement!).. I have a copy somewhere if you want to borrow! :)

  4. I always find it to be mildly distressing to finish a book that I have really enjoyed. It is rather like parting ways with a good friend. Heartbreaking to say the least! I am a slow reader, but there is always a stack of books on my bedside table. I loved the The $64 Tomato. It was too funny. I know of Des Kennedy (beautiful garden), but did not enjoy the completion of his writing that I picked up. Perhaps I should look up the earlier book you recommend. The rest of your suggested reads I am less familiar with, but will have to investigate.

  5. Thanks for adding some books to my list!

  6. I'm reading the Morville Hours at the moment - very good indeed. Other than that I have very few books on gardens - something I ought to remedy