Got ten grand to spare?

Yesterday my dearest Mother and I voyaged to Hampton Court Palace for the flower show. We were greatly entertained by the ‘Low Cost, High Impact’ gardens.

Hampton Court Flower Show 2012 - A Compromising Situation

A Compromising Situation

Am I unusual in that a £7,000 – £13,000 budget for a fairly small garden seems far from ‘Low Cost’ (the one above had a budget of £10,000)? Am I, in fact, the one so hilariously out of touch that I think most first time buyers don’t have around ten grand to spend on the garden? Is it in fact the case that I am a freakishly poor person despite feeling ‘comfortable’ financially and yet I would still balk at spending multiple hundreds, let alone thousands? Only the top 10% in this country have a net household income exceeding £40,000 and we’re expected to believe that a quarter of that constitutes low cost gardening? ‘Low Cost, High Impact’ gardens that cost one grand or preferably less would be worth seeing in my view. The gardens were pretty, very much so, but the most amusement we gained was from the budgets. Frickin’ hilarious.

I will post some more pics and things once this bad case of snarkiness has worn off!


14 responses to “Got ten grand to spare?

  1. I don’t see the point of spending that much money on a garden. Where’s the fun if you don’t create it yourself? That said, many people spend that kind of sum on a new kitchen – so perhaps it’s in the same status bracket.

    • I think you’re right. Besides I’m not saying people don’t or shouldn’t spend £7grand on a garden, just that it’s wierd to call it ‘low cost’ and suggests a basic disconnect with how the majority of the country lives.

  2. I started my garden 3 years ago, and have brought mostly on sale plants. I have done many do-it-yourself projects to cut down the cost to the minimum (I posted some of the projects I have done on my blog). I also rescued lots of plants from people who dumped them on the streets, or friends who moved away. I totally agree with the comment above about what the fun if you can’t create it yourself. Gardening is not cheap, but with a little of patience & big imagination, you can create something quite stunning.

  3. I have spent quite a bit on my garden, but I don’t think I have spent nearly that amount. I think there are many ways to garden economically, planting by seed or cuttings, buying plants on sale, and trading plants.

    • Just buying plants can be so expensive. That little bed I planted last weekend cost me eighty quid in plants – and I felt guilty about that! At work I do quite a lot of growing from seed and I buy 9″ pots at wholesale prices if I have a large border to fill, letting them bulk up in the ground.

  4. Given that Estate Agents (yes, I know we all hate them) say that a good garden adds 10 – 15% to the value of a house I think those who are creating gardens with a view to the future may well spend £10,000 over a period of time

  5. I suppose for most people show gardens are a bit of a false scenario. I suppose you have to look at it in this kind of way, if you want your garden to look like this by the end of next week this is what it will cost you, guv. Fair enough, and there are people who can afford that and will do that. But I’ve had my garden 15/16 years, in it there is a 25 foot eucalyptus and a taller contorted willow (both wrong for the garden in their vastness, but that’s another story) plus lots of other estab’d stuff. But if I had a new blank canvas garden and wanted trees of that size, plus everything else to look well estab’d, that would take a fair chunk of seven grand easily. Show gardens are good for ideas but I could never afford a makeover, and where’s the enjoyment in waving a magic wand. I’ve enjoyed the 15/16 years of toil, blood, sweat and tears (the tears have been related to the blood rather than tantrums or owt like that). It’s been priceless.

    • These days I tend to view show gardens as akin to floristry. The things that influence the placing of the plants are their shape and colour at the time of the show, not things such as will it like this soil, how big will it get eventually etc. So they’re great for colour inspiration or generalised ideas of shape and form, but the specifics will never work in a real garden. But that’s ok because it’s not a real garden, it’s a show garden. 🙂 Like I said, these ‘Low Cost’ gardens were all really nice, the one I pictured being my favourite, but if the RHS genuinely wants to engage the interest of people on low to average incomes this is not the way to go, they may even succeed in alienating some people.

  6. Certainly would’nt be low cost for me. Most of my garden is no cost…plants from friends, cuttings and divisions with an occasional splurge of a tenner here and there. Much more fun I think!

    • It’s nice when individual plants have history – it gives the garden a depth of association, a personality of its own that you just don’t get in an InstaGarden.

  7. Pingback: A brief glance back at Hampton Court | The Sproutling Writes

  8. Pingback: Hampton Court 2014 | The Sproutling Writes

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