Now I am shattered. First day of the Chelsea Gardening Matters forum. It started three years ago and I’ve chaired every year. This year the Royal Horticultural Society’s Bob Sweet has put two of us in per day to chair it. Today I am with Wesley Kerr.
The first time we met was in 2004 when I was presenting BBC2′s Gardens Through Time. We were filming at Chelsea. My director had told me to walk and talk in one direction, his director had told him to walk and talk in….a collision course. Neither of us saw the other coming and BANG we crashed.
This time we find a more collaborative way to work one on stage and the other cheer leading from the floor.
although I am too hot to think. Writing about no-chemical swimming pools is heating instead of cooling my brain. And I cannot remember the name of this plant.
I’m told that it seeds everywhere. I was told that about Nicotiana sylvestris and I can’t manage to get it to flower let alone seed.
Then there’s the enigma of the Monkey ‘C’.
Run away to the Athenaeum Hotel on Piccadilly http://www.athenaeumhotel.com/ to drink champagne with one of my garden heros, Patrick Blanc http://www.verticalgardenpatrickblanc.com/ and watch as Tim Richardson is nearly decapitated by a flying plant. It has been dislodged from the top Patrick’s stunning new planting on the outside walls of this otherwise lumpen building. Well, there’s a high wind. Tim, showing sang froid worthy of Queen Victoria, simply picks up the plant tries to replant it in the hotel’s window box. I bring Patrick over and tell him what’s just happened. Patrick is alarmed and says to Tim:
‘Be careful – that is a very special plant.’
Patrick is a consummate plantsman
Clever RHS – taking on the Plastercine garden with all the attendant publicity driven by Top Gear Presenter James May http://www.topgear.com/us/the_show/bios/james_may. And then justifying the otherwise unjustifiably non-living garden by awarding a Plastercine medal. Just one criticism of the otherwise unimpeachable RHS: why bang on about getting children into gardening and then ban small children from Chelsea? I suppose they leave the under fives to enjoy the hooligan tendencies of the Hampton Court Flower Show. http://www.rhs.org.uk/whatson/shows/hamptoncourt2009/.
I feel that this is an issue Garden Monkey http://thegardenmonkey.blogspot.com/200 … htmlshould address. S/he was in the Gardening Matters tent when James are I were (in theory) in charge. Still don’t know who it is. Guesses in the comment box please. In the meantime I will try to persuade The Monkey, who is too busy to do much of his/her blogging s/he says, to guest blog here.