Sarah Coles

KEEP HOPING

SOPHORA JAPONICA – THE CHINESE SCHOLAR’S TREE Twelve years ago I planted a Sophora japonica, the Chinese Scholar Tree – I liked to think of writing under its shade, and I’d seen one with pale pink pea flowers. It’s also called the Pagoda Tree. It has pinnate leaves, with leaflets twinning each other giving the whole tree a light airy feel. My tree grew and grew. Its shade soon covered the terrace and much of the garden. Its leaves blocked the gutters in winter, causing Bob aged 86 to climb a ladder and clear them out. What if he slipped? So last winter I got...
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CHELSEA FLOWER SHOW 2019

CHELSEA FLOWER SHOW! 2019 Yes, it’s over. I’m critical but I love it, the vibes, the brief excitement in this tiny area of plants, gardens, pop up shops, food vans, stalls selling Pimms, uplifting mottoes all over the place, furniture, gazebos, and sculpture, naff and ok. I went on the final day, and hardly bothered with the show gardens, because they’ve been on TV and they’re about spectacle not reality – they look stunning for a week before being slung into refuse vans. What has a Yorkshire canal lock to do with gardening? It’s about getting the tourists to Yorkshire. And it was...
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