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Cabbage Patch Commentary


I am no longer updating my other blog on edible gardening, but to have a read please go to  
Cabbage Patch Commentary

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Metamorphosis

Writing a book is often likened to having a baby. And with some justification. There is the giddy conception and whirlwind of excitement, then the warm glow of a contract signed. It then the process starts to lag and become heavier; sweetmeats are deployed to maintain performance – pregnancy, like literature, is an endurance sport. My new book, Published by Green Books, 22nd September  2016 Finally, fat and fecund with promise the manuscript is delivered to the publisher, for supervision and medical intervention if necessary. And, finally, the screaming and anguish suddenly stops. The Author's desk (the buns have already been eaten) And here is where the process differs. After months of to-ing and fro-ing, deliberations about nuanced argument and tone of voice, followed by concerns about stacking words in a column and balanced captions, it is confiscated. They just take it away. To put it another way, it is like watching caterpillars. They eat and eat and eat and

On The Road

Galanthus 'Fly Fishing' at Bellefield House . My latest snowdrop crush. Back in the dim and distant mists of time, when dinosaurs roamed the land and pterodactyls were frequent bird table visitors, I spent an enjoyable few years managing rock bands. There were headline gigs, support gigs. Mainstream venues and pubs. In some places the PA was state of the art, in others you thanked your stars for the decent size amp in the back of the van. Some nights the crowd was ecstatic. Others, the bar man, his dog and a couple of regulars would sit there, nodding and comparing the band to musicians that had died before the lead singer was born. Occasionally people listened to the first thirty seconds, got bored and went off to get drunk and find someone to sleep with. So it goes. I have just finished a modestly epic tour of the land, promoting The Plant Lover’s Guide to Snowdrops . And, as I pull myself vertical, brush off the debris and straighten out again, there are som

A Problem of Packaging

What I have learned today is that budget archive boxes are a false economy. Any saving is squandered on parcel tape to wrap the miserable container to the point where it resembles the misshapen prey of a filing-obsessed spider. The full box bulged and warped as I wrestled. It repeatedly burst open at the top and disgorged slithering contents. It mocked me with torn handles and strained joints (those of the box rather than my own). I fought back, suppressing an uprising of RHS Chelsea catalogues, a stampede of assorted articles and the subtle exit of   book reviews , all destined to be consigned to the cupboard. And it dawned on me that this is not a problem I have had before. Filing is not exactly second nature, but I have never before had to quell an actual mutiny of both packaging and subject matter. But then, as the back catalogue becomes more extensive, more bulky and weighty then surely it must become more potent too. Libraries are powerful places. History, knowledge, th