Accounts of an Amateur Gardener

With the purchase of our first home came a sizeable garden for an east London property containing a glorious array of wild flowers, large fruit trees, colourful bushes and mature borders

Delicate flowers, hidden paths and fantastical trinkets of cast iron fairies, woodland creatures (and the odd gnome) almost transported you to a magical ethereal escape from the surrounding urban district – well, only if you overlook the noise emanating from the car showroom next door, busy main road and don’t look beyond the borders of the garden.

But on a quiet Sunday morning the sound of the chirping birds inhabiting our garden was sheer bliss. It was obvious it had taken years of nurturing to achieve this wonderfully mature garden which attracted ample wildlife and nesting birds.

I was clearly doomed from the start. There was absolutely no way I could continue to maintain or cultivate such a complex arrangement of expertly tended to plants and trees. The closest I had ever come to being green fingered was wearing my Maxfactor glossfinity nail polish in aqua marine!

So, for the first two years of living there, my husband and I only tended to the grass area at the front of garden. Our rationale was to not disturb the rest of the garden to allow its plants to flourish and bloom as it had done so over the years preceding our arrival.

A garden rookie mistake!

The arrival of our first baby made us look differently at the space we once considered our own little blissful sanctuary and escape from urban life. The rear of the garden became an overgrown wilderness that attracted a fox burrow and a wasp’s nest and quickly became a space that was entirely baby ‘unfriendly’.

And so, Operation Garden Clearance began.

It took the gardener several weeks to remove the ample plants and bushes and in his confusion he also inadvertently removed an entire 20ft pear tree!

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Even though we have lost what was previously a beautifully maintained mature garden, we now have a blank canvas to create a space that works for us and our growing family and hope this begins my own journey towards becoming a green fingered gardening enthusiast.

For now, these luscious tulips grew in the middle of the my garden that I was able to enjoy indoors while the mess outside continues to be ignored until we begin to tackle this project in the coming months. I hope to update you further with my gardening improvements, as it changes and we hopefully make progress with.

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