I never thought I had green fingers. My Mum, on the other hand, is hulk like in her proficiency for gardening. The borders of our garden in Norfolk are teeming with flowers, bushes and bamboo; a variation of new additions and plants spliced from the soil of past houses. I love a garden. Perhaps it's that 'Little England' mentality of wanting to secure a small area of land for yourself. The proverbial raising of a flagpole, no matter how small the area.
Well, you can't get an area much smaller than my 'garden' in London. I didn't see it before we moved in, but if you know anything about London living, you'll know that any outdoor space, no matter how small, is something to have a bloody party over. That said, if you know London landlords you'll know that they never give you something for nothing. Our garden? A patch of mud that ran along the side of the house. No, I'm not exaggerating. It was just a mud patch. With some weeds. And slugs.
The slugs are still there, but after some 'outside of the box' thinking, my ever helpful parents and a few trips to the garden centre, I've managed to make a little urban sanctuary. I'm trying really hard to be humble. I am probably more proud of this garden than I have been about anything ever. I still do a little dance when a new tomato for a raspberry turns a dark, juicy pink. I swan outside with a watering can whilst still in my dressing gown and hope the neighbours can see what a bloody great job I've done.
It's not the rose garden at Chatsworth, sure, but it's my midnight runs outside in the rain with a handful of slug pellets. It's my sore back after digging up weeds for six hours. It's my Dad driving through Streatham three times to do 'gravel runs' from the garden centre. It's my bored visitors who come to the house and get a 30 minute tour of a 8ft patch of land. It's mange tout I've pushed onto my teacher training pals, whether they like it or not. Here it is, in all it's teeny tiny glory.