The Gardener :: Editor's Letter
July 2018
   The Gardener

Itís so good to be home! I write this after just returning from a jam-packed 11-day trip to the RHS Chelsea Flower Show, and some amazing gardens in England. I cannot describe to you how good it is just to be back in one place, to sit still and know that you are going to have some familiar things around you: dogs, coffee, my own garden, my family and my team from Lonehill!

Everyone always says how amazing it is to travel! Yes it is, but (and please donít get me wrong) oh my word it is exhausting! Dragging your suitcase up stairs, along platforms, onto trains (oh, and then off again because you got on the wrong one!), and trusting Google maps to get you to the right place or just suburb is all very exhausting. At one point I insisted on getting a map (some of you may have seen the pic on Facebook). Yip, an old-fashioned map on which you can see in one glance how far you are going and where you are heading.

Iím sure there is some fancy app for this, but I don't think you can go wrong when youíre armed with a pen and a good map! We averaged something like 14km of walking a day, through gorgeous gardens, pavements and up very narrow staircases (this is something that blew my mind). On several occasions my suitcase and I nearly went back down a flight of stairs!

They are simply too narrow to carry your case alongside you Ė so it has to go in front of you or behind you up the stairs, and needless to say I worked out that behind you is not so clever.

Gravity and that chap with the apple, Mr Newton, took hold of me. The suitcase drama got even better when the handle decided not to extend (can you picture it, dragging a suitcase, hunchbacked, through the paved streets!) Oh, and as for budget meals, I am over bangers and mash, and the only Pimms that I had cost a whopping R90! However, there were loads of laughs and so much inspiration, and thatís why we go on adventures Ė to become inspired to move our cheese and boundaries, and this trip did just that!

I canít wait to share with you over the next few months all the bubbling ideas and take-home grabs that we brought back for every gardener in this amazing country of ours! To top it off , our SANBI Exhibit brought home a gold medal! SANBI has been exhibiting at Chelsea for 43 consecutive years, and this is the 36th gold medal that it has won. With a new team and aided by volunteers, designer Leon Kluge did a spectacular job. Well done Team SA!

Till next month,
Happy gardening.


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