WHY ALAN TITCHMARSH HAS BEEN LYING TO YOU
[Welcome to the Skinny Jean Gardener Blog. I don’t usually blog and for very good reason. But if you would like a blogger that misspells, doesn’t use punuation and writes in quite a strong Essex accent then I am you man. That is a rather niche blogging style! And heres the only place you’ll find it! Enjoy!..]
Firstly let me start by saying that the title of this blog is clear clickbait. I think I only mention Titchmarsh once or twice, and I have the upmost respect for him, he really is a nice guy. I was speaking to him last year at BBC Gardeners World Live about how long do you keep newspaper cutting of yourself, plus some other stuff, and he was really kind.
As much as the title isn’t entirely true, it does talk about managing your expectations for your garden project. Right that little disclaimer should keep the lawyers away, and Titchmarsh.. I love ya!
Anyway.. Its the start of the season, and I'm here at Ideal Home Show giving advice in the Renovation Hub. Ive spent the whole easter weekend here talking on stage and to people who have woke up on the weekend and thought that this will be the year that we will hit the garden and make something of it.
Great stuff. Having the passion and the enthusiasm is step one to any project like this! But hold your horses, don’t get to excited. Your garden is NOT going to look or be finished like one of all Titchmarshs TV shows by the end of this year. Actually thats not true.. if you’ve got a lot of dosh to throw at it then yeh, your sorted! If your on more of a budget and are doing it yourself and getting your hands messy then No.
Theres a few reasons for this, but mainly because gardens take time, time to grow. Lets go right back to the beginning. You move into a house and are excited to get the garden done. My first rule is to leave it, don’t touch it for the whole of the first year. You need to see how the garden grows throughout the season, see what you enjoy in the garden and what you don’t like so much, but most of all how you use the garden. What areas do you socialise in, where do the kids play, where do you normally dump the rubbish bins (the real exciting stuff!).
I say this mainly by experience. When I first moved in I went for it. Social area at the bottom in the sunshine, cooking and all that. God how I wish I never started that! Fast forward a few years later and its all moved up the garden closer to kitchen. A lot of people say put the social area where the last bit of sun land at the end of the day. Theres a few issues with that, 1) when was the last time you saw the sun, and you’ll probably be in you jumper by then anyway! And 2) Do you really want to be carting all the plates, drinks and sausages up and down the garden. Bring it closer to the house and its less legwork and a more enjoyable social experience.
This year will give you the time to realise what you want fro the garden and what the garden wants from you! And then its time to work out whats important and to split it into sections. Each section will be a separate year. As I said at the start TV is TV, they have to show you a before, middle and end to inspire you, this is exactly what Titchmarsh is here to do. In reality and without a big budget your looking at a project that will take years not months. Plus anyone will tell you that a garden never really stops evolving and theres always something to do, so why try and bosh it out straight away.
Once you’ve split the garden into sections make year one the social area, either the decking or patio the first priority as for the future years work you’ll need somewhere to sit back and enjoy. Then you can look at the allotment area or the area your going to be growing cut flowers or play areas in the following years. Its all about making it manageable and not overloading you brain with so many jobs that they all get half the effort as you just want it done NOW!
Hope that helps a little bit if your planning on doing something in the garden this year. Im propa getting into this whole blogging thing but who knows you may not hear from me for a while OR you could end up with another 20 odd blogs in a week. Ill be looking at other gardening tips to start your garden other the coming weeks.