Jun 052013
 
Finsbury Park

Finsbury Park

As part of Out of my Shed‘s street party for the Chelsea Fringe, I was asked to judge eight tree pits that had been planted up in the local area. It’s the second time that I’ve been given this job, and it isn’t easy. Any tree pit that is planted up is infinitely prettier than one that isn’t, and who am I to judge one community-minded gardener’s plot against another? This year, I roped in gardener and fellow blogger Colin to help me.

Boy, was Colin a hard taskmaster. I was inclined to take each pit at face value – ie. what it was looking like on that particular day. But Colin’s assessments went much futher than that. He was looking for great structure, appropriate plant associations, good use of colour and more than one season of interest. All from a couple of square feet at the base of a tree!

Luckily Mr Mian’s tree pit looked great on the day AND met most of Colin’s exacting criteria, so we were unanimous in voting it the winner. The scheme was simple – mostly hardy geraniums – but there were also other perennials and lemon balm. The billowy plants were spilling over the pavement and could be seen from several metres away. We saw some other lovely ideas, too – one pit was planted with wildflowers, and another with yellow wallflowers that matched the front door of a house.

All of the ideas for the tree pits were infinitely better than those suggested on a recent Chelsea Fringe edition of Gardeners’ Question Time – Eric Robson suggested planting ground elder. The residents of N4 could show the panel a thing or two.

  4 Responses to “How to judge a tree pit”

  1. What a great idea to brighten up the street. I’d feel guilty for the ones I hadn’t chosen, but going on the photo above it looks to be a worthy winner.

    • Yes I think we made the right choice! Lovely idea isn’t it. There’s a street in Kentish Town that I must go to again – they’re amazing there.

  2. It probably didn’t help I was at Chelsea Flowershow the week before :), and have a postage stamp of a rented garden to work with, so know what can be done!

    It was such a great event, and everyone deserved recognition for the work they put in. They all looked pretty amazing, and the event itself was a amazing day of plants, people, and yummy cakes!

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