‘Cherry’ Ingram: The Englishman who saved Japan’s Blossoms

If you’ve been reading the newspapers or listening to BBC Radio 4’s Book of the Week programme recently, you will already be acquainted with one of Britain’s most interesting but perhaps least well-known plant collectors, Collingwood ‘Cherry’ Ingram (30 October 1880 – 19 May 1981). Following a genteel and somewhat quirky Edwardian upbringing in Westgate-on-Sea, […]

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10 Books on my Winter Reading List

  Having built myself a library, you would think I’d be spending all my time sitting about and reading. Unfortunately that’s so far from being the truth that I am rather embarrassed to admit it. Even when I have ‘spare’ time, there’s always another task begging for attention; usually a practical one. During my four-hour […]

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Story of Flowers – Azuma Makoto

  If you have delved into my essential reading list, you will already know that I find the work of floral artist Azuma Makoto breathtaking, to the point of being moved to tears by it. In a world where one frequently feels one has seen it all before, his work is a revelation, encouraging us […]

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A Once in a Lifetime Job

  Our building project was due to finish in mid July. It’s now late November and the work continues, over time and over budget. Although the end is in sight, the job may or may not be completed before Christmas. Early excitement and expectation has long since faded into disillusionment and irritation, but by next […]

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Being Mindful in Marrakech

For someone who is building a library, I don’t read a great deal. I am not a great one for sitting and relaxing, nor am I as patient as I once was. As a result I have tended to eschew books in favour of getting practical stuff done, and have deferred to the Internet rather […]

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Book Review – 365 Days of Colour in Your Garden

My initial response to the launch of “365 Days of Colour in Your Garden” at the end of 2015 was to ask myself whether gardeners really need another book on colour. Surely the subject has been amply covered by the likes of Percy Thrower (“Colour in Your Garden”, 1987), Penelope Hobhouse (“Colour in Your Garden”, […]

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Hoard

I think I did rather well, don’t you? Wishing you and yours a magical Christmas Day.  The Frustrated Gardener, December 25th 2015.

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A Growing Obsession

The promise of a new library has fuelled my growing obsession with books related to gardens and gardening. My Christmas list is a roll call of titles old and new, including Richard Mabey’s “The Cabaret of Plants“, Frank Lawley and Val Cobbins’ “Herterton House” and the late, great Will Giles’ “Encyclopaedia of Exotic Plants for Temperate Climates“. The […]

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All I want for Christmas 2015 is …….

Coming up with a Christmas list is one of those annual tasks that sounds fun and indulgent, but which I find perenially difficult. Throughout the year I have no shortage of bright ideas, especially post Chelsea and Hampton Court when I am convinced I need shiny new tools, glossy magazine subsriptions or the latest variety […]

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Book Review – Garden Design: A Book of Ideas

I love a new gardening book, which is a dangerous passion when so many fresh titles hit the shelves every year. Most are glossy, many interesting and just a handful destined to become classics. (Fewer still feature my own garden, so I confess to a degree of heathy bias when it comes to this post’s subject.) Cutting it on […]

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