Seen at the Festival of the Tree

...if you would be happy all your life, plant a garden ~ Chinese proverb

Friday, 6 June 2008

Too Late She Cried, Too Late

As I said on Tuesday, I'd never make a good journalist - I don't have the right sense of timing and probably not much of a nose for a good story. Take the above picture - see that lovely book on the left? I took the photo on April 3rd, read the book on April 4th and have planned to tell you all about it ever since. Not anymore, the lovely Emma T scooped me to the review today (click the link and then look in the Comments). Not only that, she's said pretty well all the things I wanted to say, only much better. So if you like gardening books, don't wait for me to review them here, hop on over to the Garden Monkey's Book Flange instead, add your views and put even more of them on your must read list!

But it's even worse than that. NAH was up north a few weeks ago and frantically phoned me one morning to tell me the National Trust's garden survey project I'm volunteering on was being featured on Breakfast News and Radio 4. Sure enough, Killerton was awash with people busily recording plants, photographing them and trying to look like they knew what to do with GPS equipment. The Head Gardener gave an eloquent summary of why the garden survey's important - the Trust only has 5% of its plants documented at the moment, lots of them are of historical interest (e.g. collected by famous plant hunters), many of them are rare etc. Did I race to my blog and tell you about it then? No. Did I race to my blog to tell you when Landscape Juice did a really good feature about it on his blog a couple of days later? No - I just left a very limp comment on there instead. Did I tell you about it the week after when I went into Heelis to find the Parks & Gardens Team were inundated with enquiries from around the world? Did I heck as like. No, I'd earmarked National Volunteer Week i.e. this one to tell you about it and that's where it's stayed. So I'm telling you about it now - when the story's stone cold dead.

Exit VP, hanging her head in shame.

Update: Oops, I'd temporarily forgotten that GM outscooped us all with a review in March, just as the book came out. So I've delved deep into the archive to bring you this link.


  1. Girl, don't you sweat it.

    1) I have NOT said everything there is to say about that book. I said it was really good, in my own way, but I bet your way is different. No people notice exactly the same thing or write in the same way. PLEASE still post yours... :-)

    2) I miss out on stories all the time. When Victoria of Backyard fame texted me to tell me about Monty, I should have got straight on my blog, but I didn't... It seemed sort of bad if someone is ill I suppose. No necessary journalist instinct there.

    3) the only thing I have scooped this year is a green building in the City and then only because my dearest bicycling lover met me excitedly saying "I've just seen a green wall!" so actually that's his scoop, not mine...

  2. VP, that's ok--you were out "doing" instead of writing about it. With all your activities, I don't know how you write as often as you do.
    As Emmat said, you can still write even if it isn't a "scoop"; it's good to have two or more different perspectives on the same topic.

  3. That has happened to me a few times Michelle. I have thought of a really good item for the blog, and then I go and read about it on someone elses. x

  4. Thanks Emma - that's good to know. You and James have persuaded me to put my attempt up for scrutiny - after I've taken a new photo for the review as this picture was the one I'd taken for it originally!

    Rose - too right. If we weren't out doing we wouldn't have anything to blog about. As for my amount of writing, most of it gets written in my head whilst gardening or up the allotment (hence 'Veg Plotting'), so I need to get it out of there on a regular basis!

    TIMP - from what's been said here, looks like you should go ahead and say it in your own way anyway Louise :)


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