Sep 132011
 

Walthamstow

Also on the E17 Art Trail we passed this little gem, which belongs to Becky Wynn Griffiths and her partner. From the Art Trail map we weren’t sure whether the art in the house was going to feature cats crying blood (yes, really) or championship farm animals. We were relieved to find it was the latter. Becky’s art centres around photographs and paintings of prizewinning cows, sheep and pigs.

Needless to say I tarried awhile in the front garden. It’s home to some bright annuals and perennials in pots, a big phormium, nasturtiums spilling out of windowboxes and an acer. The burnished shades complement each other perfectly.  There’s even a bench, topped with interesting objects. The whole garden is a great lesson in what you can achieve in just a few square metres.

Jul 152011
 

Dartmouth Park

As I’ve observed on this blog before, the likelihood of someone being home as I’m snapping their garden seems to be disproportionately high. These days I have a card at the ready and most people are more than happy to have their garden photographed.

My luck ran out last weekend, though. The cockles of my heart still warm from the house a few doors down (see previous post), I found this other lovely display (there were also some other pots that you can’t see, which contained French marigolds and cornflowers). I got my camera out, raised it… and then heard some loud banging on the window from behind the net curtains. This was accompanied by an emphatic ‘NO!’. And then the curtains were pulled to one side.

Having been a gardening journalist for several years, I am used to the fact that the owner of a garden is often not at all what you’d expect from the look of their garden. And that was certainly the case here. I was imagining someone at bit boho and middle class (as most of the inhabitants of Dartmouth Park are). Let’s just say that the person shouting at me was not remotely like that…

Jul 112011
 

Fitzrovia

I don’t think I’ve ever had a ‘girl crush’ before but I might be in danger of developing one. My friend Vicky and I stumbled across Emma’s hairdressing emporium (which doesn’t yet have a name) on Cleveland Street a couple of months back. We instantly loved the way she’d kitted it out (shabby chic might be the best way to describe it) and swooned over the battered green leather sofa in the window and old issues of Vogue. We also fell in love with her black labrador, who she takes for walks in Regents Park, temporarily shutting up shop.

When we went there the other evening to make an appointment for Vicky, we were instantly struck by Emma’s new flamboyant display of pots. It turns out that sheused to live across the road and had a similar display there on the steps of her flat – I’d wondered why it had disappeared. Nasturtiums, geraniums, hydrangeas and hollyhocks spill on to the pavement and create quite a show. From inside the salon, it looks like a real garden.

Vicky and I both agreed that Emma is very cool indeed. Next time we go in we’ll probably discover that she gives all her earnings to charity and is about to discover a cure for cancer.

Jul 092011
 

Tufnell Park

I spotted Tania’s blue bike store with its green roof from the other side of a main road and felt compelled to make a beeline for it. Tania was working in her garden and explained that the roof was the work of her boyfriend, who had made it over three weekends. He followed instructions on Islington Council’s website.

It makes a change to see a green roof that isn’t covered in sedums. Tania said that the only problem is that she can’t see the plants that well from below as the shed is quite tall. She’s thinking of planting something trailing and bright next, like nasturtiums.

 

Jun 182011
 


I went for lunch at my friend Naomi’s house today. She’d made a salad entirely out of leaves from her garden, plus nasturtium and borage flowers (which taste like cucumber). The orange and blue flowers looked so pretty I had to take a pic.

And then we both decided we were tired, and took a nap!