Tag Archives: herbs

Chelsea Flower Show – meeting James Wong and my favourite gardens

Tourism Malaysia's winning garden at Chelsea Flower ShowI went to Chelsea Flower Show for the first time last week and, considering how little I know about plants and flowers (see earlier failed attempts to cultivate herbs on my balcony), I thoroughly enjoyed it.

I was a guest of the Malaysia Tourist Board, which won Gold for its rainforest-inspired garden, designed by James Wong (off the Grow Your Own Drugs programme on TV).

The garden was really beautiful… Continue reading

Garden envy in Japan

I’m on a work trip in Japan at the moment, on the island of Okinawa way down off the south coast.

They have one of the longest life expectancies in the world here – 86 years for women and 77 for men. This is put down to their chilled-out lifestyle and healthy cuisine so I came to Emi’s Place to try some of the Okinawan specialities.

These range from seaweed and aloe vera (bit gross) to pickled cucumber (quite nice) and prawns in dill-tempura (lovely).

Emi showing me around her garden

Feeding time

Plant food

To give them the best possible start in life, I’ve invested in some plant food for my boys out on the balcony.

They’re not looking too healthy at the moment, to be honest. The basil is faring particularly badly. I haven’t watered them all week so that probably hasn’t helped – the weather’s been a bit rubbish so I’ve not been out on the balcony much.

Getting started…..

So, day one of the New Greener Me has involved a trip to Harringey Homebase to buy some herbs to grow on the balcony.

At about two metres square, it’s unlikely I’ll ever grow enough out there to become self-sufficient, but you’ve got to start somewhere.

Pick-a-Pep and mint, living together in perfect harmony (I hope)

I had intended to fully research balcony gardening before I went, to find out who likes sharing a pot with who, which