Gardens, tea and above all, CAKE!

June is prime time for brilliant gardeners and barmily generous householders to throw open the gates to their gorgeous borders; home-made water features and adorable cats. It’s garden visiting season! Never mind the perfect show gardens of Chelsea, this is when you can find out how your neighbours tackle ground elder, and what return they get on their solar panels. Also, just how much early evening drinking is going on in British gardens. Every garden we visited on Sunday revolved around the nucleus of two chairs, table + BBQ console. Have we all been immersed in a summer sozzle-fest...

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Jack russells dusted; chickens briefed: the garden is open!

So the scene was set. Glasshouse (Alitex – the best!) was swept and decked out in bunting; Growbag sister Elaine was installed on plant sales; son’s girlfriend, Emily, was put in charge of tea and cakes (son couldn’t be trusted, it needs someone properly organised for this key role, ergo someone female); family friend Anne was installed on the gate; radio contact was established with the four other gardens open in the village that day and we were off ! A detectable frisson of nervousness ran around the team when we realised that we had been successful in getting our little village...

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