It was easy, it was cheap…

This bi-weekly blog is about the art of Gardening and making the most of what you’ve got in terms of budget and tools.

Gardening is simple and anyone can do it. DJ Andrew Weatherall grows his own Radishes and David “Ram Jam” Rodigan is an avid Sweet Pea enthusiast so I’ve been told.

Talking about Reggae, in the 1970’s Bob Marley was owed some money by the producer Lee Perry so he decided to pay him a visit to get what was his. On arrival at The Upsetter’s house, the very angry Marley was stopped in his tracks by the sight of broken 7” records planted in pots in the front garden. He laughed so much he forgot about the debt and ended up writing another song with Perry. The power of Gardening eh?

You don’t need much to start; a space to grow, some basic tools and a bit of spare time, all combined with a bit of patience (which I lack sometimes, more about that later). As Bob Flowerdew, Gardener and recycler extraordinaire said, “It’s the perfect hobby to save you money. While you’re out Gardening, you’re not shopping and spending money and when you’re finished, you’re too knackered to go out down the pub or to a restaurant”. Too right!

The reason I garden is to save money growing my own fruit and veg but at the same time I love losing myself in the joys of the soil and it takes my mind off the bills and endless lists that constantly go through my mind.

I’ve always been interested in the hobby since I was kid as my dad was a keen Chrysanthemum grower. As I got older, I discovered Punk and being in a band so kept the Gardening past a secret, until I moved to London in my early Twenties and got as job as a Gardener with Westminster City Council. This is where I learnt the art of working the soil from experienced Horticulturists, alongside other skills from the chancers and skivers there. It was also at Westminster where I had chance meetings with Johnny Rotten, Glen Matlock and the Mutant Waste Company (but more about them and the council as the blog progresses). Then I put my Gardening past behind to become a student of Graphic Design.

While I was doing my design degree I got myself a Gardening round to supplement my modest grant from Lambeth Council. So on a Saturday morning a bit worse for wear after mad nights out at balearic tinged clubs unbeknown to the little old ladies who employed me, I’d “tip around with a hoe” as they used to say in the council.

Time passed, I got married and had a couple of kids. A few years ago we all moved into a house where there were shedloads of work to be done. Outside in the garden, mummified underpants littered the undergrowth that was once the lawn. Something had to be done about it but we had no spare cash. This is where the blog comes in. All the tips and tricks I’d learnt over the years will be aired alongside stories about the council and the Punk Kicking dance.

It was easy, it was cheap, GO AND DO IT!


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