Much bindweed in the marsh


It’s that time of year when private gardens are opened up to the more green-fingered public.

Having lived during the 60s and 70s in various south London flats until the age of 25, I never had a garden of my own. And living on the fourth floor, unless I’d been Red Adair, a window box would have been spectacularly dangerous.  So, the decision of having some finely-cultivated begonias combined with plummeting to an early death versus life was quite a simple one to make.

But this lack of horticultural knowledge means the gardens I have owned are highly unlikely to be opened to the public – unless the RHS introduces “Best in class bindweed” at the Chelsea Flower Show.

As a teenager I did buy the I-Spy book of clematis, but, due to lack of spelling ability, was sadly disappointed.  I watched Bill and Ben avidly for gardening tips.

At primary school we were given bulbs to plant; the success I had I might as well have planted one from Philips – such was the greater chance of growth!

I’d love to write into Gardeners’ Question Time and ask: “I think I have Japanese Knotweed; can the panel recommend a good ointment?”

As far as I’m concerned nettles is the bloke who played Bergerac!

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