A bit about me



Welcome to the Patient Gardener blog which I have been writing since 2008.  The title ‘Patient Gardener’ is quite aspirational as I’m not a particularly patient person.  However, I find that I am at my most patient when it comes to things horticultural, maybe its because being in the garden and working with plants helps to slow me down, soothing my mind and focusing my thoughts.

Gardening is a hobby, a past time and not my full time job which is completely different and can be demanding and stressful.  I keep my work and home life very separate.

I garden in middle England, nearer to Wales than Birmingham, on the side of my beloved Malvern Hills which I adopted in 2000 when I moved myself and my family here.  I love this part of the world, which has become my home and I can’t imagine living anywhere else nor seeing the hills out of my back window.

The theme of this blog is very much all things horticultural.  I have learnt over the years that my readers aren’t interested in product or book reviews and to be honest I don’t enjoy writing them.  I’m also not interested in monetising this blog or working with others so you will find that my posts are my own thoughts and ramblings mainly about my garden, my trails and tribulations as well as my triumphs as I believe there is nothing more uplifting than realising that someone else is struggling with the same issues as you and we don’t all have those perfect gardens that are promoted in the glossy magazines.

So welcome again, I hope you enjoy my posts and please feel free to loiter in the background or indeed add the odd comment if you have a thought, question or just to say hi.



41 thoughts on “A bit about me”

  1. Hello

    I think you left a message on my answer machine yesterday about Zanthoxylum schinifoliuim. I managed to delete my messages!! If it is you perhaps you could email me with your question.
    thanks. Sue

  2. Heard you on Mike & Reg (BBC H&W) today Helen.

    Well done. You’re now on the road to superstardom. I’ll be listening out for more from you in future weeks.


  3. Hi Patient Gardener

    I would love to speak to you about the Aspects of Gardens Series of Talks i put on, i’minterested in you coming and talking. Please email me


  4. Hi Patient Gardener

    I am contacting you as an employee of Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust. We are a leading conversation charity. I came across your blog for research and wanted to contact you to ask if you will be interested in writing an article for our “Festival of Garden” which will launch in March. We are trying to make people aware of the use of water butts and highlight how important and useful it is. We have a press release all ready and waiting to be screened and written. Please let me know and I’ll be happy to answer any questions.

    Email if you’re interested.

    Kind Regards

    Laura WWT

  5. Hi Patient Gardener,

    I’m on Blotanical but I can’t work out how to get the Blotanical logo on my blog. I notice you have it on yours and was hoping you could guide me through the process of how to do it (I’m on wordpress too)????



  6. I am the author of a number of gardening books and have recently started a blog about garden design and in particular perennial meadows.

    The site is http://www.perennialmeadows.com

    My aim is to encourage others to think about planting in the broader context of garden design. To this end, I have written a number of posts about my ideas for the creation of perennial meadows. Additionally, I will be launching a series of eBooks through the site.

    I am busily searching the web for good gardening sites to follow which is why I am contacting you. Your content is professional, intelligent and well above the average run of gardening blogs and is very relevant to my own areas of interest.

    If you have time, please take a look at my new blog – any points of advice would be most appreciated as this is a new project for me.

    I will continue to follow your blog and should there be any way I can help you now or in the future please do feel free to make contact.

    Very best wishes,

    Michael King

  7. Hello, Patient Gardener! I have to laugh, as I’m new to blogging and just spent the better part of Friday and Saturday trying to figure out how to set up a blog so I could launch it on the first day of spring. Now that it’s live, I’m cruising through the blogosphere to see what’s out there, and I came upon your blog. I used a picture of mini daffs on my post, and then I see your lovely daff picture as well, and I thought, ah ha, a kindred spirit! You’ve obviously been doing this a while, and I really enjoyed looking at your blog. Then I realized you’re way across the pond, and I realized what a small world we live in. Happy first day of spring!

  8. How lovely to find such an inspirational blog. I’ve recently moved into a house with a long, narrow, steep garden with a clay soil and an ample crop of ground elder. I neeed all the patience I can get….keep going! Jane

  9. Hi Helen, I have just discovered your blog. I am not a regular blogger but my daughter asked if I could grow some flowers for her wedding which is in September this year. I start blogging just to keep a diary of what was happening in my garden last summer.I found it a bit indulgant to begin with but soon realised it was a great way of keeping a record of what is growing well. I became a regular slug baiter by using Tesco Valu beer. It works a treat. I look forward to following your blog.

  10. Hello! I discovered your blog by accident today, after having googled to remind myself of the name of what turned out to be lysimachia ciliata. Your site looked SO familiar as it is the same format I started blogging with earlier this year (ramblinginthegarden.wordpress.com)! Having read a little of what you do and how you use your blog it is making me rethink how adventurous I want to be – so far it is mainly for my own benefit, but there again that is how you started! Thanks for your inspiration and I look forward to reading more! Regards, Cathy

  11. Hello Helen, Thanks for visitng my blog, I am really glad to see that blogs do help to find collegueas and stay in contact. What I have see of your blog looks fantastic, but I wiil read in depth and since I have susbcribed, I will be in touch. Best, Lula

  12. Hi Helen,
    I’ve just realised I’ve never posted a hello on here.
    It was because of your excellent and well thought out blog that got me inspired into having a go at blogging.
    WordPress recently told me I’ve blogging for a year. Where does the time go.?!! 🙂
    All the Best.

  13. Hi Helen,

    I was hoping that you could get back to me with an email address that I could send you over some product information on, for a possible review.

    Many thanks,

  14. Hi Helen,

    I am a junior designer studying industrial design and technology at Loughborough University. For my final year design project i have set myself the challenge of designing a product that can better deal with garden waste around residential properties.

    My ultimate aim is to reduce the number of people that travel to council tips to remove their waste, usually ripping through multiple bin bags in the process, which again is not very sustainable.

    Any thoughts or insights you could provide me with would be greatly appreciated at this stage, I am very welcome to hear any suggestions you may have.

  15. Hi Helen,

    We are nearing completion on a new blog post that list our favourite UK Gardening blogs, with reasons why and links to posts, needless to say you have been included. I was wondering if you would be kind enough to provide us with little Autmun/Winter gardening tip for our readers?

    I’d also be happy to send the article so you can take a sneak peek before it goes live 🙂

    Thanks in advance, and keep up the great work!!!

  16. Hi Helen,

    Royal Collection Trust is hosting a bloggers’ event for our forthcoming exhibition ‘Painting Paradise: The Art of the Garden’ at The Queen’s Gallery, Buckingham Palace and wondered whether you might be interested in coming along.

    If so, please do get in touch and I can send you further details.

    With best wishes,

  17. I once was as passionate about gardening as you are. But less time, little children and lots and lots of weed made my passion dwindle. A pity, because looking at your blog even wants me to go back to that time!

  18. Hi Helen. I was signposted to your site this morning by ‘Real Men Sow’ as it mentioned leek moth – not that my leeks are suffering at the moment. I was interested to read your ‘shall I, shan’t I’ posts about giving up your allotment. I have been facing a similar dilemma. There are only 2 of us, so basically I feed friends & family for free. Well it is free for them but hard work for me! My plot is/ was enormous and hadn’t been touched for 9 years when I took it on & my lovely OH has developed some cardiac problems. I thought that it was a difficult plot to divide, due to fruit trees & I would have to give it up.
    On the plus side I love it – I live in Arundel & from my plot look up at the Castle & the Cathedral. The site is quite secluded & a lot of the allotment holders are in their 80s although some new younger people are taking on plots. About a month ago I asked the Chairman of the allotment society if he would look at my plot & see if it was feasible to divide it. He thought so & this morning I had my shed & compost bins moved & realised that it was now maneagable for a woman approaching 70. I am now hoping for a fit, younger neighbour who can get my strimmer to work!
    This is right for me at my time of life but certainly when I was working ful time I couldn’t have managed an allotment. If you have any regrets remember there may be a time is right to have a plot again. Your mother proves the benefits. There are a few of us working through bereavement on my site.
    Oh, & by the way, borlotti beans are an ace crop. Not prolific but pretty, meaty in stews & I now have a lot dried for winter.
    Love your blog.

  19. Hi Helen,
    I just wanted to let you know that Patient Gardener has won the Best Garden Website award from Happy To Survive Magazine. I had a badge to give you as an award winner for your blog, but I don’t seem to have your email.

  20. Hi Helen,

    Beautiful blog. We are a women’s rights charity and we run a refuge for women who have fled “honour” based violence, forced marriage and domestic violence. We’d be so grateful if you could support our crowdfunding appeal to create a therapeutic refuge garden, to help survivors of violence raise self-esteem and feel empowered to rebuild their lives.


    Anything you can do to spread the word within the gardening community and on social media would be hugely appreciated.

    Many thanks,

    Sara and all at IKWRO

  21. Hi Helen,
    I have been inspired by your blog to do my own and have been at it about a year now. I come from a design background, but, have gradually gotten more and more obsessed with planting… Please (if you have a mo) check out my site and let me know what you think,
    Happy gardening,

    Jo xx

  22. Lovely to read about how you got started and I so fully understand the obsession. It seems as I grow older, the obsession grows stronger. Come to think of it my maternal and paternal grandparents were pretty obsessive about gardening too and, as a kid, I would spend time with them in their gardens. Perhaps it’s in the genes? Who knows, but whatever I love it too. So glad I found your blog. I hail from the hills of Melbourne, Australia. So glad to meet you online.

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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