As well as fruit and veg there are a lot of roses in the garden - all old varieties and therefore mostly only flower once and liable to suffer from lots of problems like black spot BUT none of that matters - they have the most beautiful flowers, proper scent and they're what roses should be like. So, if you're a fan of hybrid tea roses look away now. My Dad loved them - hybrid teas that is - for their reliability, disease resistance, the fact that they stay upright and don't flop about, their unusual colours like bright orange and yellow (but these are meant to be roses, remember, not daffodils or dahlias). If you're not sure what I'm talking about visit the rose garden in the middle of Regents Park next year in early June where you can compare lots of rose varieties, all helpfully labelled and growing to their best advantage.
Oh, and I particularly like roses which look like raspberry ripple icecream... like Variegata di Bologna (which even sounds like an icecream flavour), Ferdinand Pichard and several others whose names escape me.
And if you wondered why I've got an old implement with the word "Queen's" stamped in its handle it's because the dad of the old chap we bought the house from was a keeper in Queen's Park back in the 1930s and I'm assuming that the staff were given the old tools to take home... at least the shed was full of them. I don't think there can be any other explanation. I don't want to cast nasturtiums (as someone once said).
And finally, if you thought I'd abandoned this blog and you've now abandoned me I wouldn't blame you - stuff got in the way (the Book Festival, the garden). But if you are by some miracle or mistake reading this THANKS and next time I really won't leave it so long.