What sort of a Gardener are You?

Have you ever pondered on what sort of a gardener you are?  Here in the garden centre we have the privilege of serving people from all walks of life, with the common link being their love of gardens.  You might be surprised though to know, that while a love of gardens and greenery is the common denominator, gardeners aren't like peas in a pod at all!  Here is a small snapshot of the gardeners we have the pleasure of serving.  

  • The Addicted Gardener:  we have a few of these visit the garden centre weekly.  They are the gardener who can't walk past a plant in flower without buying one, or maybe even two.  They are the gardener who buys plants they don't possibly have room for in their garden; the gardener who secretly plants flowers and vegetables for the benefit of others in community and church gardens or along verges; and the gardener who must, at whatever cost and whatever their health, spend time in their garden each and every day.
  • The 'Neat, everything in it's place, Symmetrical' Gardener:  These are the gardeners who value balance and order, and are happiest when their garden is clipped, swept, mowed and neat as a pin.  Colour, shape and form are imperative to these gardeners.  Patterns must be repeated and they are particular about their purchases.  They are also the gardeners who must, at what-ever cost, match new plants with existing ones in their garden.  If a plant, for whatever reason dies, it must be replaced with a plant identical in height and shape, or all balance will be lost! 
  • The 'Let Nature Take its Course' Gardener:  This is the gardener who can't possibly pull up self seeded beauties, rather leaving them in-situ to grow and flourish in pathways, lawns and garden beds they are not meant for!  They are the gardeners who plant their summer veggie gardens at the very last moment because they have such difficulty pulling out the winter veg which is still .... just .... hanging on.  Their gardens, of course, are full of diversity and beneficial insects, are often overgrown, but are bountiful and productive.
  • The 'I Can't Stand Bug's - even Good Bugs' Gardener:  Surprisingly there are a lot of these gardeners out there.  They are the gardeners who are scared of bugs - the good and the bad, and who can't possibly go into the garden if they think there is an infestation of insects.  For these gardeners beetles and caterpillars seem to illicit the most 'eeek' factor, followed closely by spiders.  Wearing gardening gloves doesn't cut it for them ... they would rather a spray, any spray, to eliminate their garden of anything which creeps or crawls.  
  • The 'Nostalgic' Gardener:  This is a gardener after my own heart.  Their joy of being in gardens as a child is strong.  They are comforted by the plants of their Nan's era, and find great joy in planting the plants which they remember from their grandparents gardens ... they look for plants like old fashioned Stocks; tall alstromeria now so hard to find in garden centres, and things like rambling, climbing, out of control Banksia Roses.  
  • The 'Productive' Gardener:  This gardener has no space in their garden for frivolity, rather every spare inch of soil is dedicated to growing and producing food.  Seeds and seedlings are planted with regularity and with great planning, and food is harvested and shared far and wide.  They are generous gardeners; the type who leaves a bag of lemons hanging over the neighbours fence, or who goes to work with a half dozen zucchini, a box of tomatoes, and a bundle of bok choy.  

It goes without saying though, that whatever your garden habit, or your preference for plants, here at Barrow and Bench we understand you.  In the garden centre all our garden staff are passionate, trained gardeners.  We share your garden joys and failures.  We are inspired by your stories, and most of all, we get great joy in helping you get the most from your garden.