Monday, April 21, 2008


Gosh! I'm lucky. VP didn't bring her axe with her.

I'm not sure whether this was in deference to the genteel ambience of Poundbury Garden Centre, or whether she forgot. But, for whatever reason, her axe wasn't to be seen and I escaped with my life.

Indeed, there was nothing to suggest she was anything other than a charming, interesting, gardener from Chippenham.

She didn't mention Saturn once.

And while I put my foot in it over and over again by saying what I don't like about other people's gardens - and what I find funny about other people's blogs - and how marvellous my own garden is even though most of it has fallen apart in the wind - VP spoke only warmly about everyone and everything.

I passed on Wilb's good wishes from Rach.

And, just as I was about to leave, I did as Karen suggested - and asked probing questions about Skimbleshanks and Jess. Are they really cats - or alien beings - disguised?

VP laughed - in an off hand 'I-know-you're-only-joking' sort of way.

(That in itself was suspicious!)

I grew apprehensive.

Suddenly - I realised!

If VP is from Saturn, would she risk meeting me on her own?

I took a quick glance round the room.

Could her cats be 'shape-shifters'?

Were Skimbles and Jess here? Disguised as humans?

The waiter?

The woman at the cash till?

I ran from the coffee shop.

Heart beating.

And bought seeds.

(Some people turn to drink - some to seeds.)

Marigolds. (Ha! Mr Subjunctive!)

Californian Poppies. (Hello Rosa Sinensis!)

Wild flowers that are supposed to grow where nothing else will. (Take that you bit of trodden ground outside my living room window!)

More Runner Beans.

(Though I'm not sure these were the right ones to chose.)

Indeed, I'm more afraid of them than I am of aliens from Saturn. (Saturnians?)

(Saturnalians? - No! That can't be right!)

According to the packet, 'Wisley Magic Beans' give 'the heaviest yields of any garden variety'.

They have 'Long, smooth, straight pods with a delicious flavour'. They have a 'long picking season'.

So - what's the catch?

If these runner beans are that good, why grow any other variety?

Will Scarlet Runners be run out of town? Forced from shops? Removed from catalogues?

Obliterated from tradition?

Did VP, Skimbles and Jess bring them from Saturn?

Will the packet explode when I open it?

Will the chicken soup be ready in time for Didcott to drink when he returns from the Mary Rose?

- Who knows?



Anonymous said...

Glad you had a good coffee with VP.
I don't grow runner beans - only French Beans

rosa said...

it sounds like so many things in your life-seemingly inocuous things-are actually fraught with peril. Perhaps you need a holiday? Or just a lie down?

Thanks for the mention-my white California poppies have just sprouted. And there was much rejoicing.

(It's definitely 'Saturnalian'. If not, it should be!)

How are Ming and yourself going to celebrate Earth Day? And is there a Mars Day?


Happy almost Earth Day! I'm very curious to find out if there is a Mars day.

Frankie @ Veg Plot said...

Could VP be a plant?

Philip Bewley said...

You mentioned you saw your barrow thousands of miles away in a picture I took. Is Ming using this as a special kind of craft? I will never look at barrows the same way again, i can tell you!
Happy Mars day!
You are featured today!!!!

Esther Montgomery said...

Karen - I nearly bought a packet of small French Beans - with the intention of using them like mange-touts in salads.

But there isn't room for everything I would like to grow.

If it weren't that the garden would feel too empty in winter - I'd grow just vegetables.


Esther Montgomery said...

Rosa - Yes. I definitely think a holiday (followed by a lie-down) would be a good idea.

The Californian Poppy seeds I bought are 'mixed' and I'm annoyed with myself for not noticing. I like to know what colour will grow so I can decide where to put it.

But since I don't really know what I'm getting, I've 'mixed' some of them myself now - with the seeds from a packet of 'wild flowers' that I bought at the same time.

(I find that quite funny - because, presumeably, once I've planted them in my garden, they won't be 'wild' any more.)

Earth Day - It was only when I came across it on other gardening blogs that I even knew it existed!

Mars Day - hmmm.

Will have to chose a date.


Esther Montgomery said...

Frankie - did you have any particular plant in mind?


Esther Montgomery said...

I really like the photo of barrows on Philip's blog.

It has inspired


P.S. Flying Wheelbarrows would be so much more interesting that Flying Saucers!