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Sally Nex Sally Nex | 07:12 UK time, Saturday, 19 March 2011

In the news...

Ever picked a few daffs for the kitchen windowsill on the way home? You could be risking a criminal record.


The parents of two little girls caught picking daffodils in their local park in Poole, Dorset, were given a police warning for damaging council property this week. Disproportionate policing - or irresponsible parenting? The children were, after all, picking bunches of 70-80 daffodils: I'd have trouble finding that many in my garden.

The Guardian provides a helpful run-through of the rules: not only parks, but also roundabouts, verges, community gardens and nature reserves are all officially off-limits for flower-pickers.

Happy birthday to the Eden Project which is ten years old this week. It seems just yesterday that those iconic biomes transformed an unpromising Cornish china clay quarry into the world's largest glasshouse rainforest.

Thirteen million visitors later, Eden is also a beacon for sustainability, its latest self-sufficiency project a geothermal power plant. Charismatic founder Sir Tim Smit, never one to pull his punches, puts Britain's failure to follow Eden's example down to a 'culture of irresponsibility' in a country 'ruled by the ethics of old men who have lost their virility'. Don't hold back, Sir Tim: tell us what you really think.

Elsewhere on the web...

It just gets better: this week it was a personal tour of Monty Don's Jewel Garden, planted with perennials chosen for their bright, vibrant colours and with more than a passing nod to Monty's former career as high society jewellery designer. The verdict on the new-look Gardeners' World has been, on the whole, positive: Jason found it soothing and satisfying, but rather too short; while there's something close to a 50:50 split on the messageboards between those who think Monty is a welcome breath of fresh air, and those campaigning for the return of Toby and Alys.

It's all prompted Vicky Frost at the Guardian to wonder what makes a good gardening programme?. What do you think? Alys Fowler's refreshing hippy chick approach for The Edible Garden? Carol Klein's simple delight in her own garden earlier this year? Or big diggers and Matthew Wilson in Channel 4's The Landscape Man?

A real treat this week has been Tim Richardson's fascinating romp through garden history websites for Country Life. Particularly wonderful is the British Library's publication of John Evelyn's plans for his garden at Sayes Court, transporting you straight back to the 17th century complete with handwritten notes.

Out and about...

The country's first show dedicated to fruit and veg (and chickens, bees, goats and pigs) is up and running. It's been a long time coming (the credit crunch put paid to it last year) but The Edible Garden Show already looks set to become a firm fixture in the calendar.

Edible Garden Show

Friday at the Edible Garden Show

Already we've had Diarmuid Gavin, a lot of funny costumes (it was Red Nose Day yesterday) and a recording of Gardeners' Question Time from the show; who knows what this weekend will bring. Get yourself down to Stoneleigh Park in Warwickshire this weekend and indulge yourself in a positive banquet of home-grown produce.

In case you can't get to Warwickshire, there are also special Grow Your Own weekends coming up at no fewer than three RHS gardens around the country. Harlow Carr in Yorkshire has cookery demonstrations, Rosemoor in Devon is offering guided walks of their lovely walled vegetable garden and talks by legendary veg grower Medwyn Williams, and Hyde Hall in Essex is inviting kids to take up their Brussels Sprout challenge.


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