Saturday, 9 January 2010

The top ten gardening trends of the last decade...

Skidding out of the noughties and into the teenies, (tensies? tenners?) ensconsed in snow boots, thermals and woolly hat, unable to do any kind of gardening (unless shovelling snow and feeding birds count) I have whiled away the downtime thinking about the gardening trends that have emerged in the first ten years of the new century and thought I'd note down my (very irreverent!) top ten.

10) Grow Your Own. Suddenly it's very cool to be growing your own fruit and veg, whether it's tomatoes in your hanging baskets and strawberries in your window boxes or full-scale smallholding self-sufficiency. Which brings us to the next trend.

9) Allotments. Now as rare as hen's teeth with waiting lists as long as rods, the allotment is the grow-your-own essential gardening requirement.

8) Urban Greening. From guerrilla gardeners to vertical green walls, green roofs, green pavements... the city garden landscape is no longer parks and roundabouts, it's about conservation, regeneration, micro-climate, eco-pounds and reclaiming the urban er.. jungle.

7) Flower Power. No, not the hippy movement or a bid for brighter borders but the emergence of the flower motif on.. well everything. Garden tools used to be grey metal, green plastic or made of wood. Now everything is flowery, pastelly, stripey, dayglo, funky, gorgeous, designer-labelled and rainbow-hued. Garden sheds used to be quiet havens of peace and calm, now they're a psychadelic assortment of eye-poppingly pretty gadgets and gizmos.

6) Rills and Rooms. Garden rooms - Lots of travertine marble paving with a rill traversing it. (They used to be called patios and water features but that's so last century!)

5) Seed Swaps. Like having a penfriend but instead of writing letters, you swap seeds.

4) Real Lawns. Meadows, wild flowers, daisies, butterflies, beetles, birds, the circle of life, labyrinths and a lot less flymo-ing of frogs in spring.

3) The Birds and the Bees. No self respecting noughties garden is complete without being a wildlife haven for them.

2)Solar-Powered Lighting. Ever tripped over someone's solar-powered garden path lighting on the way back from the pub because you couldn't see it?

Of course, once you've perfected your urban/eco/self-suffient wildlife haven garden room you really should take photos and post it on your...

1) Garden Blog. The online equivalent of peeking over the fence into someone else's garden without the embarrasment of getting caught or tripping over their solar-powered garden path lighting...