Lies, Lies, and Garden Writers
My breakfast garden magazine has left me feeling rather fierce and furious. Honestly! Garden journalists! The things they say - and the things they miss out - about Amazonian lady gardeners.
A 'DICY' Gardener
As a 'DICY' (Do It Completely Yourself) non-Amazonian, my spirits sink easily. Small projects can take for ever - two weeks to spread a measly cubic metre of compost, for example. Shovels and spades have to be light enough to handle. Lugging heavy things off to the burning heap can make me cry.
Compost to Spread
So when I read about an amazing lady gardener in a magazine all my senses are on high alert. Is she as good (or as slow) as I am, doing her garden projects? Could I ever do the things that she's done? Did she really do all that? By herself?
According to a Garden Journalist...
According to a garden journalist writing for The English Garden, in 2007 a Scottish lady gardener removed an apple tree and replaced it with a large circular pond. It was an anniversary present for her husband, so says the gushing writer.
The English Garden Magazine
And apparently her husband didn't even notice the tree was gone. I wondered (cattily) if his wallet noticed the money paid to the arborist, the pond builders, and any general garden workers required to produce her anniversary gift.
Amazonian Gardening Woman Inspires...
Honestly! If she truly did this by herself I'd be forever in awe of this Amazonian gardening woman. I'm seeing her wielding a large chain-saw, driving a scoopy mechanical digger, loading heavy things into dump trucks (without crying)... It's not fair.
The Moosey Non-Gardening Partner
Glib garden writers who leave out the practical truths make a one-woman gardener like me totally lose confidence - especially at breakfast, when I'm a bit vulnerable. Forget the pond - how long would it take me to remove a whole apple tree? I once spent three long, desperate days trying to saw down a medium sized Cotoneaster.
Partners Should Notice...
And what sort of Non-Gardening Partner wouldn't notice a whole tree being removed? The Moosey NGP says, smugly, that this other husband obviously doesn't spend much time in the garden. And he would certainly notice if his chain-saw suddenly sprang to life, or if the Head Gardener started puttering around driving a digger. Phew - that's a relief...
Now, as it happens, I'm perfectly happy with my apple trees. Well, there is one whose branches are seriously overcrowding an ornamental Dogwood, but I'll need help removing it. And if I'm ever interviewed by a journalist for The English Garden I'll insist on full disclosure. There are lies, and lies, and then there are garden writers...