Notes from a wildlife garden 2
by Jan Curry Round Hill Reporter" September 2004
Thank you for all the lovely comments we received from our neighbours (and further afield) about our garden’s six-minute ‘slot’ on Chelsea Flower Show. The teasing and cutting down to size came from my family, so I wasn’t allowed to become too big for my boots! A few weeks on, it just seems like a dream.
It was great bring invited into the Flower Show early, before the huge crowds arrived. The show gardens had just been watered and spruced up and looked and smelled fantastic. Admittedly, some just looked bizarre, but each and every one was a tribute to the designer’s creativity and their glorious choice of shrubs and flowers.
At eleven o’clock, I was due to be interviewed by Jenny Bond in a wildlife garden designed by a group of girls from Burntwood School, London. Thousands of school children across Britain had sent in designs for a wildlife garden sponsored by Daihatsu, hence the amazing bird feeder and water feature made from new car exhaust pipes! - the rest of the garden was planted very naturalistically, providing a variety of habitats for wildlife. It looked really stunning and the Silver Award the girls had received was truly deserved. Yes, I did feel scared that I might get tongue-tied and not be able to answer or speak coherently to Jenny Bond, but she was very relaxed and immediately put me at ease. The Producer deemed the interview to be fine first go (they said they had allowed time for six retakes if necessary — gosh, that would have been embarrassing!)
Rusty and I were then taken to lunch and met many of the celebrities who present Chelsea and other BBC gardening programmes. I will avoid name-dropping! At 12.30, we went to a studio to watch the transmission and for the first time we saw the film of our garden that had been made a couple of weeks before, and also the interview that had taken place just an hour earlier. Scary — the producer and cameraman had assured me it would all be OK, but I had endured a fortnight convinced I was going to look and sound an absolute idiot, so it was a relief to see that, yes, it was all right and our garden looked really good.
It was a once in a lifetime sort of day.