My Garden: Refreshing The Landscape

old glasshouse

I’ve got Shaken Stevens playing in my head as I look back and forth at this picture. I was never a big fan of his and should there ever be a list of things that get on my nerves, he’s definitely up there at the very top. No offence. None taken Shakin’.

To more pressing matters this was, until this week my glasshouse. Now, it is but an empty space.

If I’m honest, I felt a little guilty taking it down. There were those who said it could have been saved, salvaged or repaired. In reality, it was made of that late 1970’s Cliff Richard era mobile home/ caravan park at the time nouveau type aluminium and was til now almost a putty that could melt and bend in my hands. And whilst the two periods of severe storms had done it no favours, the bends, aches and pains missing pained me as they fell so regularly as it fell out of shape and to the point it was time for history and evolution to collide.

corkagh park (16)

In talking with Matthew Jebb, Director of Dublin’s Botanic gardens some time ago, he chatted how a landscape should evolve. Even the ye olde, as I sometimes see them, Botanical Gardens. And he says [quote – Scroll the audio player below to 20:02 minutes and take a listen.]:

Nothing is ever static. We would never say you can’t touch that bit of landscape because it’s been like that for 50 years. As in a domestic garden, if you don’t give a garden a makeover every 10 – 12 years it starts to show. It really does look a bit decrepid. You need to start digging things up, changing things around, replanting and it just freshens it up. It’s what nature does….

Based on that, or not, I didn’t feel so guilty. And in reality, it very politely looked like I just didn’t give a damn any more. Something that is far from the case. In all honesty, things simply get old. The now 1980’s glass could no longer be cleaned. The bolts were tired and disintegrated in my new würt drill bits as I attempted to fix it….

donegan gardens

I see gardens now in passing and I can tell you by the plants still existing, and their placing whether it was 1970’s or boom era planted. And just like that the cogs click. One realises how illogic holding onto your appendix is, now and that [r]evolution is good. Especially in gardening. It was logically and aesthetically time to do the honourable thing.

In my head, I have many pictures. What I see in front of me some times, irks me. It irritates my mind to the point that, for the very right reasons that you and I both knew all along, the aged old planting style has to be stripped. It may well use some of the old components – but, the end result has to look good, leaning towards damn good. And I, I don’t really do the sure that’ll do ye, it’ll be grand type mindset. Especially when it comes to gardens.

peter donegan, gardens

 

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