Further garden thoughts

These essays are triggered by thoughts about the connection of plants and gardens with the big questions of the world.

Tom Hoblyn garden 2021 chelsea

The garden as a sanctuary

My grandmother’s joy was most apparent the moment she returned to the house. She proudly filled vases with flowers and prepared delicious meals from the fruit and vegetables she had grown. The garden was my grandmother’s domain, her sanctuary, and the source of her self confidence.

the magnolia

The magnolia

For the past seven years the magnolia has been our borrowed landscape, a generous gift from its previous owner to the whole neighbourhood. I try not to think about its absence. After a long winter every green shoot seems like a miracle, but a whole tree covered in hundreds, maybe thousands, of large-petalled flowers is the boldest statement of renewal.

seeds of lockdown

Lockdown seeds

What exactly was happening during the first lockdown? People had started gardening. They were also rushing into the parks. But why? Was it just boredom?