The 'Open' idea has recently extended to Brighton gardens too - not the ones that have been primped, primed and perfected ready for the National Garden Scheme (although those are of great interest and the Socks will be making a point of visiting more of them this year) - no, these are just small, town, gardens that owners feel have enough of interest to warrant the small viewing payment which goes to local charities. I've visited some which were interesting and others which made me feel less charitable and I wondered what on earth they felt their garden had to offer anyone other than a lawn and some shrubs bunged in around it. Not that there is anything wrong with having the latter other than there isn't really anything to view.
Round the back of the house to view the garden - a very decent size but not 'Monty Don style' huge. Very much a garden we could relate to and combining many of the elements we would like to have if we ever get to move somewhere bigger. Michelle has done much of the design and work over the last year and it divides into four areas a patio with table (and more importantly Michelle's Mum's very good homemade cakes), family/lawn area with decent sized garage and chic shed, veg and greenhouse area and then a luxury pad and run at the back for some very lucky chickens!
|Veg and Visitors|
As Michelle was busy with a constant stream of visitors who were obviously very keen and asking lots of questions, Helen and I took the opportunity to have a thorough snout around. The lawn borders weren't fully filled out yet but what was there was an interesting mix of edibles many of which had architectural (and perhaps a little Diacono) interest.
Mark Diacono's influence was felt elsewhere as his and some other usual suspects' books were laid out on a table. The Bedsock was rather taken with Alys Fowler's 'Thrifty Gardener' and no collection can be complete without the lovely Landscape Man's 'Making a Garden' as displayed to you here by my glamorous assistant the 'highly organised' Helen.
Although I am always going to see my garden as predominantly filled with the colours and texture of flowers there were certainly plenty of ideas and inspiration for edibles that we could take from Michelle's and incorporate in our own. There is a rumour I was sneaking around the back of the greenhouse to photograph the one untidy area - the truth is I was checking out the slimline waterbutt with a view as to whether I could squeeze one in behind my own greenhouse.
|Mich - A Portrait of a Lady with Secateurs|
The final visitors disappeared, the Open Garden closed and we enjoyed a chat and glass of wine with Michelle who was no doubt exhausted but I would imagine very happy with both the visitor numbers and their genuine interest in her garden. For myself and the Bedsock it was not just the Veg Patch but a chance to meet up again with some fellow tweeters and learn more about them too. A thoroughly enjoyable experience and perhaps one that other garden bloggers and tweeters might think about doing - all you need is a garden, some cake and the confidence that people aren't looking to see perfection but a chat, a few new ideas and something they can relate to.