Tuesday, 26 May 2009

Chesea 2009 Freshly Prepped Other Piccys



Chelsea 2009 Freshly Prepped Celeb Photos

Andy Sturgeon, Jenny Bond & Me, Hannah Gordon, Rosie Harkness and me

Chelsea 2009 After the show

Well I've been very naughty since i haven't posted a blog for several days, but hopefully will be forgiven - we have been so busy, and then got home late on Saturday after the show, and spent nearly 2 days sleeping/chilling etc. Anyhow, you will probably all know by now that we were awarded a Silver Flora Medal, which we are proud of, but I really would have preferred a gold! Maybe next time................. we have had such am amazing week, press day was awesome, with the media showing lots of interest, 2 journalists were actually arguing over who could interview me first (amazing!), but the very best of all is that the public loved it! I cannot tell you how many lovely comments we have had from the visitors, if i ever do it again i will definately have a visitors book next time, and ask people to write down all their lovely lovely comments. We were visited by a selection of celebs including Hannah Gordon, who is charming,Jenny Bond also truly lovely, and we then managed to get a huge amount of coverage on BBC TV including interviews by Jo Swift, Andy Sturgeon, Rachel De Thame, and Lisa Tarbuck. It has been an amazing experience.
A really big thankyou to all my friends who came and helped with the build and with manning the garden during show week - Janie, Mandy , Ellie, Maria, Julie, Colin, Ian, Steve & Mandy, Ruth, Liz, Jill, Heike, Karen, Hazel, Tristen & David - I am indebted to them for their help they gave freely x (hope i haven't forgotten anyone)
Further thanks of course to Geoff, Stu, Mark, Neil & Bob who built the garden, and special thanks to my financial sponsors, Pawley & Malyon, Heather Barnes Property & Investments, Attwaters and other sponsors Waitrose and Absentia.
It was a great experience and I look forward to building many more.......................

Saturday, 16 May 2009

Chelsea Day 8 - 3 days to go

Well yesterday was truly a fantastic day, arrived at site with the garden covered in tarpaulin and not a single plant planted - left with tarpaulin gone and every single last plant installed in the garden! An amazing effort by the team - a huge thankyou to my helpers for the day, Julie, Ellie, Karen, Mandy, Liz and Neil (Eco Lutions). We didn't leave site till pretty late, but we didn't manage to polish off a couple of bottles of wine to celebrate. Garden is now looking truly scrumptious, I am so pleased with how it has come together, it is almost exactly as i had imagined. We are getting so many lovely comments from passers by, certainly makes all the hard work and effort feel worth while. Got to do a big tidy up today, and need to titivate the plants, and get rid of all of the bad leaves etc. Must go, looking forward to today.

Thursday, 14 May 2009

Chelsea 2009 Build Day 6 - only 5 days to go

Yesterday was a thrilling, but a very very long day. We needed to start to get the kitchen units stained up and this was going to be a big problem with both the weather, and the heavy blossom that still continues to fall at chelsea. We had to erect a large tarpaulin cover over the whole of the garden to create a clean, dry environment. As luck would have it the BBC turned up to film us just as we had got the tarpaulin up and cleaned all of the site - this meant of course that they couldn't film unless we took the whole lot down - something which we really didn't have time to do - what a shame! Proportion of London, very kindly lent us one of the 'Varnishers' to carry out the staining, and in fact Des is back again today to finish the job - big thankyou to Des, and of course my hubby Keith for loaning us Des. Our landscaping team spent the whole day finishing off the hard scape and solving all those niggly little corners etc, big big thank you to Mark of Terra Firma, who didn't get home until gone 10pm last night! They have done an amazing job, and the garden is beginning to look brill.

We finally managed to start to move some of the plants into the growing trays at 8pm last night - very very exciting - it is now beginning to actually look more like a garden. So looking forward to a enjoyable day to day, hope to get all the plants laid out, and if possible to start planting some of them up. Janie and Mandy did a bit of creative planting design to my planters, they were supposed to be being planted with Nasturtiums, but since these are far from in flower, they have come up with a lovely alternative....................you'll have to come and see the garden to find out what they've done.

Must go have got to get back up to Chelsea and our plants.

Monday, 11 May 2009

Chelsea 2009 Build Day 4 - only 7 days to go

Such an exciting (& stressful day) today! But wow we now have our Edible Wall in place at Chelsea............and it looks fabuloso. Mark Laurence came up and between him and his team put it together, with its own irrigation system. The crops currently look just a little sad, but hopefully by morning they will have perked up a bit. Wrapped them in horticultural fleece overnight so they don't sulk too much out in the cold at last.
Stu & Mark (Terra Firma) had a productive day, drainage system for the waterproof growing trays now in place, work surfaces fine tuned and fitted (with a bit of tweaking here and there), started to finish the hardwood cladding - first job for tomorrow. Neil (Eco-Lutions) doing an amazing job with the lighting - and electrics generally - we now have a fully functional wine chiller, so first job of the day for me tomorrow, to get some wine to chill down - we've promised ourself a little drink or two tomorrow! Lighting and electrics now fully functional, the LED strip lights in the upright pergolas look AMAZING! Overhead task lighting being fitted tomorrow. Its all coming together and just getting more and more exciting...........beginning to feel very nervous, butterflies in the tummy, just need to hold it together for a wee while longer.
Praying it doesn't rain tomorrow, we still need to get ALL of the wood stained, may need to erect a huge tarpaulin so we can stain even if it rains!
Hubby and daughter now having a go, saying why i haven't mentioned them on my blog, so here we go, hubby Keith, cooking, shopping and looking after house and kids while mum is off doing her Chelsea stuff. Youngest daughter Francesca (14) thinks I've disowned her, and she has a GCSE next week! Olderst daughter Anouska (16) had her first AS level today, mum not even around to show moral support! What a crap mum?
Anyhow Chesky now wants to have her say......................
'mum has officialy been taken over by the world of chelsea! we thought the lecturing on the latin names of plants was bad enough but now we have the constant talk of 'freshly prepped' and how it's coming along. Nevertheless i think the household is pretty excited and proud of mum - somewhere deep under all the fights with a stressed out mum :P mums been proudly showing us the pictures of the garden so far, and it all looks really good. cant wait to come visit her and help her with it. wishing her luck and the rest of the showcasers too. hoping she wins a medal, even if we wont stop hearing about it til she's old and wrinkled!'
I will take that as a complement - I thought Chesky always thought i was old and wrinkled already.........time to sign off have a glass of wine before it all starts again tomorrow.

Sunday, 10 May 2009

Chelsea 2009 Build Day 2 - 9 days to go

Well we had a fantastic day yesterday, the team got so much done and we are very much still on schedule - which is a relief. Managed to get most of the units into position and re adjusted, was quite amusing getting our Wine chiller into situ, got lots of interest from the neighbouring teams, asking if they could keep their wine chilled in our fridge! The kick boards went in (for the first time) and they really do finish it off very well. Neil from Eco Lutions got the first set of LED strip lights put into the pergola uprights - they look amazing, even in day light you can see the effect, can't wait to see what they look like at night! Dashed off to Peter Jones to purchase a kettle, needed one for the garden anyway, but came in jolly useful yesterday making teas and coffees for the team.

Neil brought the Waterproof Tv with him anyway (even though we're pretty sure we can't use it on the garden) still trying to talk the RHS into letting us use it in the midst of our Edible Wall. Will talk to the show manager again on monday, but they have already said no, so it will probably be a no.....................

The team are back on site today, I am having a day off, before my run of 13 solid 12 hour days. sounds like they are already having a good day, spoke to Tristen a short while ago and apparently the hard wood cladding is now in place on the curved frontage - something of a transformation I'm told , can't wait to see it tomorrow.