Week 26 – Feeling hot, hot, hot, hot…
It’s hotting up, down in Devon… and things are starting to get a little crowded at the nursery in South Milton. We’ve got multiple living walls developing nicely, all ready and waiting to be shipped to various locations across London. Whenever possible we like to plant the walls well in advance of the installation date, allowing us to keep a close eye on the plants as they develop and grow, sending out roots and settling in to their new vertical home.
Week 24 – A tour of London
This week I’m back in London to check on a number of living walls we’ve installed over the last few years. A couple needed a little attention, others however required nothing more than for me to stand and appreciate what a fantastic job everyone who is involved with producing our living walls has done. When our combined hard work comes together and the plants start doing there thing… well it’s simply a pleasure to behold. This wall in Swiss Cottage was installed just a few months ago, and I am absolutely delighted. It’s one of our best yet. Congratulations team TLA for a job well done.
Week 23 – Looking good in Knightsbridge
The well heeled folk who reside in the exclusive Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea (London) are always well turned out and looking their best. The cars on the streets are shiny, supercharged and often driven by chauffeurs. The facades of houses are tall, white and often hide a multitude of fabulous treasures behind them. Last week Will returned to check on this living wall, created for one such home owner a few years back and took these images so I could assess (from my sleepy seaside retreat) how the wall is doing. I say it’s doing just great, looking good, dressed in it’s horticultural finery. The Erysimum ‘Bowles’s Mauve’ is almost always the first down the catwalk with the Campanula poscharskyana ‘Stella’ not far behind. However, I’m more than happy to wait a little longer for my favourite, the Begonia grands subs. evansiana to stride out for the finale (and usually close the show). With it’s nodding clusters of slightly fragrant pale pink or white flowers I’ve loved this beauty from the first time I cast my eye upon it. Bravo!
Week 21 – Nottingham
This week, we returned once more to sunny Nottingham. Dr Neil Rotherham’s garden is fabulous. He’s a great gardener. I’ve never told him this, but when he asked us to create him a living wall that he could enjoy from his new kitchen window, I was slightly nervous. It’s a tricky spot, occupying a once forgotten shady slice of the garden that runs down the side of the house. It was one of those awkward, overlooked spaces… but it is no longer ignored or unloved. It is now celebrated, admired and commented on over a glass of wine. Best of all it is now a much loved space and one in which Dr Rotherham spends many an hour gently pruning off dead leaves and spent flower heads.
Week 20 – Villefranch-Sur-Mer
A few weeks ago I returned with my trusted colleague Alan to carry out some maintenance in a garden we created in Villefranch-Sur-Mer a few years ago. It is a fabulous spot on the south coast of France. It was a tough week, but somehow we managed to get through it, and despite the numerous challenges we faced we were even able to force a smile for this photo taken on the last day…
Week 19 – Dangerous plants
It is quite easy to pick up an injury in our line of work if you are not careful. A sore back from too much digging. Shredded arms from clearing brambles. Cut fingers from pruning. A mild case of sunstroke or frostbite from being exposed to the elements. Tick. Tick Tick. Tick. I never expected that I’d manage to break a thumb though. Whilst not being able to drive for six weeks is a complete pain I guess I should be thankful that my thumb doesn’t actually hurt very much.
Week 16 – A head for heights
Whilst Adam is enjoying the delights of rural Devon I have been getting to enjoy the delights of a building site on Old Street. Lucky me. Actually the view from the roof terrace is pretty good, especially on a sunny day. It is nice to know that it will be even better in a few months once we have installed a large living wall that tracks the shape of the neighbouring building’s gable end. My only slight concern is all the working at height we will be doing – I’d have taken a photo of the view to the pavement but I didn’t dare get that close to the edge of the terrace!
Week 9 – London Calling
The full TLA team all met up in London this week to install not one but two living walls. Alan and the Stevington squad brought their walls for a fab courtyard in Highgate whilst I (the current Devon team) brought up my latest offering which slotted straight into a wonderfully modern garden in St Johns Wood designed by John Davies. John’s a fabulous designer who we’ve produced a number of living walls for over the years and you can see his beautiful portfolio of gardens here.
Week 8 – The Beast from the East
Snow, sledging and slipping around. I fleeced up the living wall that I’ve just finished (installing next week in St. John’s Wood) and headed for the slopes! Well, our own personal sledging field which sometimes doubles as a farm. Much fun was had by all including yours truly.
Week 7 – Finishing Touches
Just adding a few finishing touches to this living wall destined for St Johns Wood in London. In a rare blast of early spring sunshine the Helleborus Niger are already starting to flower!