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Any time’s a good time to start again!

I imagine you thought you’d got rid of me for good…..well…..no! I just had a very long break .Autumn’s here bringing with it the season of flower shows; it is one of the most interesting times in the gardening year actually. Even Chelsea has made an unprecedented decision , fans can’t wait any longer and so they’ve decided to organise a smaller version in September.

In Italy we already have quite lot going on in September.This year they did a special Orticola though I didn’t go, I’m still wary about taking public transport…..I wanted to go to Bergamo for the ” Maestri del Paesaggio” and a student of mine worked out a fabulous itinerary but unfortunately a bout of allergy put a stop to that. However, I decided to go to Verde Grazzano which is now in its fourth year and I know it’s never crowded. It’s quite a long journey but my WAZE took me along almost totally empty motorways, it began to feel a bit like “the day after”! Verde Grazzano is a very interesting show held in the castle grounds, quite small but very selective. The best thing is the people you meet; this year at the Grandi Giardini Italiani stand I was lucky to be able to chat to a gentleman whose house and garden in Sicily has been a refuge to a huge quantity of writers and artists, and being a writer himself , he was also a wonderful conversationalist. While I was listening to him , the lady who owns a famous garden in Piedmont that I’ve already visited ,arrived and that was a lovely extra. It’s interesting to find out behind-the-scenes details that you probably overlook when you are enjoying their gardens.

There were plenty of places to eat but of course everybody had been more longsighted than me and had booked a table,but I did manage to persuade my way into a restaurant so all’s well. After lunch it was time for the big event of the day. Carlo Contesso, a garden designer was illustrating a very brief, potted history of the garden. Absolutely fascinating, and like all the best talks, left you wanting to know more.

Whats that? Did I buy anything? Well it certainly wasn’t in my plans as I’ve no more room in the garden. but you know how it is. Temptation? Can’t resist, so I didn’t even try! I did get a lovely mèlange of autumn blooms, they’ve already composed themselves into a lovely, colourful flower bed!

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