It’s barely been two weeks since I got back to my summer job as a landscape gardener, can you believe it? Already my mind is filling with wonderful ideas on lush forest gardens, botanists collecting rare species from all over the world. Latest of all, after a gardening program on BBC, why not start a plant nursery with historic and fantastic fruits, berries and other edible plants?

“Historic fruits nursery”

Does have a rather nice ring to it, doesn’t it?

Never mind that I am not actually an educated gardener or horticulturist of any kind, and would have no idea what I was getting into.

But just imagine, massive, proper glass and brick Victorian greenhouses, solar powered in every meaning of the word, and pots upon pots of carefully grafted, planted and cared for plants that are slowly slipping into history as monoculture tightens its stranglehold.

Writing and gardening from our sustainable, natural house with a large, flourishing forest garden and some glorious greenhouses. Could a possible future sound any better?

We grow tulips too! But new bulbs have to be resown each autumn in our short season.

Why did I become an environmental chemist again? To save the world, right. As with any hippy.

But there are times (usually every summer I work as a landscape gardener, fancy that) when I wonder if I really did study the right thing. Now, don’t get me wrong, my years in university and the things I have learned, places I’ve seen and friends I have gotten are incredible treasures I would not trade for anything.

But there are times when I wish I was a gardener. I just enjoy the work so much. Hands deep in soil all year around, doing the organic thing, nurturing them from seed to plant and being a positive force for change.

Of course, with us moving to accommodate my partner’s studies every few years, it is very difficult to establish any sort of gardening routine, even as a hobby, which can be frustrating at times.

Never the less.

One day.

Purple and cross-bred primulas, a staple in the Arctic, along with common yellow ones.

One thought on “The chemist in the compost

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