Meet the Blogger: Brian of OurGarden@19

2015_05300018Today’s Writing 101 assignment requires me to do a collaborative post with a fellow blogger such as an interview or guest post.  I’m not a fan of guest posts as I think its unfair to ask someone else to write content for your blog but then you could argue that it’s a chance for a blogger to access new readers.

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Anyway, rising to the challenge I decided to interview Brian of OurGarden@19.  I have known Brian and Irene for years, they live only 10 minutes from me and when I first moved to this area they ran the local Cottage Garden Society which I joined.  I was involved with the group for a few years attending many a garden talk, visit and ‘do’ with Brian and Irene.  Having left the group I lost touch with Brian and Irene and was pleased to bump into them again when Brian came to give a talk at my local horticultural society – a good talk it was too.  Brian and Irene now run a local garden group,Black Pear Garden Club, which I understand is very successful.

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Having helped a number of friends with their National Garden Scheme openings this year Brian and Irene decided to open their own garden for the scheme and to accompany this Brian started to blog. The photos on this post are from my visit to Brian and Irene on the second day of their opening.

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So here are my questions to Brian and his answers.

Me:.How long have you and Irene been creating your existing garden?
Brian: 10 years

Me: Given that you work as a gardener, isn’t it a bus man’s holiday creating your own garden?
Brian: It can be but it is the garden I most enjoy working in.

Me: What do you hate/dislike about gardening?
Brian: Having a bad back – (me – I can sympathise with that)

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Me: Obvious question but do you have a favourite garden to visit?
Brian: Great Dixter (me – totally agree)

Me: This year you and Irene decided to open your garden for the NGS. This is quite an undertaking given the high standards visitors expect and the logistics needed. Why did you decide to open it for the NGS?
Brian: We have opened in the past for the village church. We have always supported the NGS by helping friends who open, visiting NGS open gardens and because of the charities they donate to.

Me: Did you enjoy the experience of opening for the NGS?
Brian: Yes. We both enjoyed talking to the visitors.

Me: .Would you do it again?
Brian: Yes

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Me:  If yes – what would you do differently or is there anything new you plan to add to the garden for next year?
Brian: We opened as a village group of three gardens we have recruited two new gardens for next year. We are opening two weeks later to offer visitors a slightly different viewing period. In our own garden I am growing more biennials such as Sweet Williams, Foxgloves and Sweet Rocket to hopefully be flowering then.

Me:.Do you have any horticultural ambitions? Places you would love to visit or plants you aspire to be able to grow?
Brian: Giardina di Ninfa in Italy – Irene:  Japan. (me – Hello Irene and I agree with both those)

Thank you Brian for taking the time to answer my questions.  I shall look forward to visiting next year and seeing how you have change the planting though I suspect your amazing white wisteria will be over which will be sad.

You can follow Brian and Irene’s garden here

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11 Comments Add yours

  1. Julie says:

    Helen, this is a lovely post and lovely photos too of their garden. I follow Brian’s blog and often wish he would come over to wordpress as it would, for me at least make it much easier to read his posts as commenting is tricky through wordpress and their is no ‘like’ facility, sometimes their is nothing to say but I want him to know I like it! I follow him too on twitter but I’m not a regular on there. That said, glad you chose him to interview!

  2. what a beautiful garden !!!!

  3. rusty duck says:

    Your photos provide a new perspective on Brian and Irene’s garden.. which is beautiful!

  4. Brian Skeys says:

    Thank you Helen. The Wisteria may well be over, hopefully the roses will be in full bloom! Your new camera takes some great photos.

    1. Helen Johnstone says:

      Hi Brian
      I am pleased with the camera, glad I plucked up courage to get a DSLR

  5. I love meeting new people, I really enjoyed your interview and in the process found a new blog to read.

  6. A lovely interview – thank you to both!

  7. winterbournehgblog says:

    Brian and Irene’s garden looks absolutely fantastic. Especially the Wisteria. We have not long planted a number of Wisteria in a recent overhaul of our pergola. I wonder, do you know if it is ‘Shiro-kapitan’?

    1. Helen Johnstone says:

      Hi
      Sorry no idea which wisteria it is, pop over to Brian’s and ask him

  8. Cathy says:

    Most interesting, and even more so as I have also visited Brian recently too! Great photos, by the way!

    1. Helen Johnstone says:

      Hi Cathy
      Brian liked the photos too – to be honest I didnt think they were that great which is why I hadnt posted them before but obviously I am being too critical

Please feel free to leave comments as its always lovely to get feedback. I try to respond to comments as much as possible but sometimes life and work get in the way but I will do my best to respond especially if your comment is a question.

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