Archive for June, 2010
Posted by editor on Monday, 28 June 2010
Taken from the writings of our London friends at The Women’s Room blog: www.thewomensroom.typepad.com/the_womens_room/
I don’t go to therapy, instead I garden. It keeps me calm, I can work through all my issues and have imaginary arguments in the greenhouse where no one can hear me and I always win. The plants respond well to the attention and there are weeks when I spend more time nurturing my seedlings than my family.
The other advantage of gardening is meeting other gardeners, who are all too willing to share their interest in growing things and often give you stuff, in the form of cuttings and bits of leaf to identify. This weekend we went to the Garden Gadabout in a very sunny Brighton where we met some fabulous enthusiasts eager to share their green spaces.
We saw a number of interesting trends…..
- The new shed - everyone’s got a fancy room-in-the-garden shed, with sofas/internet connection/curtains
- Vegetables in raised beds – everywhere but everywhere
- Potatoes in bags/containers – apparently easy and prolific
- Beech sticks as wigwams for climbers (prettier than bamboo)
- Chickens – who have their own fancy coups if they’re lucky
- Seating areas – loads of them everywhere
- Recycled boxes/tins/sacks are the new pots
- Mosaics – from small to complex, black and white or multi coloured
- Creating your own seed packets and hand drawing the floral fronts
- Cakes – it seems all gardeners can cook cakes and make excellent lemonade
Here are some of the photos taken this weekend…
…and don’t forget the Garden Gadabout (private gardens opening in aid of the charity Susssex Beacon) is happening again weekend 3rd/4th July.
Note from GG coordinator Bridgette Saunders: “As usual The Sussex Beacon’s garden will be opening Saturday 3rd July. Come and visit us and see the changes that have taken place. You’ll receive a warm welcome and have the opportunity to visit the gardens of this unique centre. There will be stalls, a tombola and of course cream teas to buy and enjoy whilst relaxing in tranquil surroundings. All the funds raised from The Garden Gadabout come directly to The Sussex Beacon.”
Check their website for details www.gardengadabout.org.uk
Posted by editor on Sunday, 20 June 2010
Last Wednesday, we were delighted to welcome Peter Thurman to our second Plant School evening. Peter is Kew trained, has tackled thousands of design projects in over 30 years as a landscape and garden designer – from small town gardens, to country estates and commercial developments – and teaches at the London College of Garden Design.
Peter lives in Sussex, and has what is clearly a marvellous garden. He brought along a wonderful selection of plants from his garden to illustrate his talk, including some rather unusual cultivars. His focus for the evening was on Designing with Plants – it was inspirational, encouraging us to consider different ways of selecting plants for our gardens to enhance the visual impact we can create. . The focus not only on colour combinations, but on shape of plants and flowers, and how to successfully put groups of plants together. One of many tips is to work together “something similar and something different”.
The evening was a wonderful taster for the Garden Design course he will lead in October at The Garden House. The course runs each Monday, for eight weeks starting on 18 October - a practical and inspirational study programme designed to appeal to those thinking of changing direction into the professional world of garden design, or for those of you who would like to design your own private outdoor space.
For more information on our October course, or to make a booking, check the DIARY on this website.
Posted by editor on Monday, 14 June 2010
Opening one’s personal space to visiting gardening enthusiasts is a tense business, like baring your soul for all to see. We’re really not sure why we do it – it’s an emotionally rocky time – one moment you’re revelling in a little admiration, then appalled when someone notices the empty petunias box from B&Q shoved into a forgotten corner (we only bought them at the eleventh hour to plug a gap for heaven’s sake!)…
Of course when the wellie’s on the other foot – nothing gives us more pleasure than exploring someone else’s garden, loved and nurtured over many years, or newly created and full of potential and exciting ideas…
If you possibly can, keep the weekends of 26/27 June and 3/4 July free – two weekends when over sixty beautiful private gardens and community spaces will be opening their gates for this year’s Sussex Beacon Garden Gadabout. Many are in Brighton and Hove – but also as far afield as Lewes, the village of Rodmell, and to the east, Peacehaven and Seaford.
There are an extraordinary variety of outdoor spaces to enjoy. New gardens join the best from last year – visit overflowing allotments, community spaces, shady nooks and courtyard gardens, large expansive gardens, gardens where creativity is key, and gardens where plants come first – all hidden gems waiting to be explored…
Many offer delicious homemade cakes and refreshments, plants for sale, jams and honey – even sales of local artworks.
So whether you’re an experienced gardener, keen novice, or simply want to come along to see what your neighbours have done with a space similar to your own – check the website, look out for the free booklet, and start planning your trails! www.gardengadabout.org.uk
All proceeds from the weekends go to the Sussex Beacon, a unique centre providing innovative services to meet the changing needs of men and women living with HIV. www.sussexbeacon.org.uk
Posted by editor on Tuesday, 8 June 2010
Our garden here at The Garden House is run on organic and recycling principles. So we love and admire gardens created to promote similar ideals.
At the Chelsea Flower Show last week one of our favourite gardens was Places of Change, brought together by the Eden Project in partnership with the Department of Communities and Local Government and the Homeless Link.
Up to 50 homelessness charities took part, contributing to Eden’s second year at Chelsea, with more than 75 people working on the site at a time. All received vocational training in woodwork, planting and other horticultural skills that they can use to get employment in the future.
It featured five designated zones: crops and food; floristry and leisure; medicine and health; industry and manufacture – a metaphor for the hidden treasures that lie within communities and the most unexpected places.
The eclectic design included a greenhouse made using recycled bottles, plants grown in hostels around the country, trees donated from cemeteries in East London and sculptures made from old washing machines.
Another favourite garden run on recycling principles is a “pop up” community garden in Lewes (run by a group of local artists and gardeners – one of whom is our Garden House friend, Ella!). Here abandoned packing cases are reused as raised vegetable beds, and living willow woven into hideaways, thick fencing – and even a sofa!
Find this exciting and creative “guerilla” garden at the Old Fire Station, North Street, Lewes BN7 2PL. It will be open the weekend of 3rd/4th July as part of the Garden Gadabout - the open garden scheme that’s been running for over fifteen years in support of Sussex-based charity The Sussex Beacon (it started with a few supporters opening their gardens in Brighton to last year an event where over 70 gardens threw open their garden gates).
Garden Gadabout open gardens are spread far and wide from Shoreham to Lewes and everywhere in between. Do make time to visit this and other gardens. Small or large – all are inspirational, creative - and real!
Posted by editor on Saturday, 5 June 2010
The Garden House invites you to its first “pop-up restaurant” on Friday 2 July! Come on your own or bring a group of friends to enjoy outdoor eating at its best. We can promise you great company, a beautiful setting in The Garden House garden (tented if it looks like rain!) – and great food and wine, of course!
Cost: £25 per person for three courses.
Location: The Garden House, 5 Warleigh Road, Brighton BN1 4NT. Starts 7.30pm until late.
Places are limited and must be reserved. To book contact 0778866 8595 or email email@example.com – do spread the word via Twitter and Facebook!
MENU: Fresh and local ingredients, some from the garden, will be used wherever possible (menu subject to change if adverse weather dictates!)
- Fried halloumi cheese and lime and caper vinaigrette
- *served with selection of breads
- Mushroom croustade
- Salmon en papillote with dill and lemon, and fresh Hollandaise sauce
- *served with seasonal vegetables and green salad
- Summer pudding
- Baked vanilla and lemon cheesecake with marinated strawberries
- Cheese and biscuits + £3
- Coffee or tea, with chocolates + £3.00