After a morning attempting to oust some more of Lavinia’s disreputable friends, I went shopping. I am not talking spuds or sausages. I am talking proper shopping. I am speaking of discount store purchasing! We have a local general store which excels in the naff, their plant centre included. Glittered heather, 1m high plastic gnomes, plastic flowers and, I am cringing as I type this, ornamental cabbages. All these can be found in this cathedral to bad taste. Far worse, they do not appear to care for their plants, I would even doubt whether they actually like them very much. It was in this very same place that I overheard a discerning customer asking a member of staff if a certain specimen would do well close to her pond. The reply was “Sorry, I don’t know anything about plants”. I feel we need a dramatic pause to digest this comment. It is a plant centre and you don’t know anything about plants!
Whether or not I should frequent this evil establishment is open to debate. In my defence I must mention that it is here I have purchased Anisodontea capensis, Edgeworthia chrysantha and Rhodanthemum hosmariense, amongst other gems. In amongst the dross there is always the potential of treasure just waiting to be discovered. Tucked behind, or underneath, pushed to the side, looking a little thirsty. This in itself is irresistable. The thrill of the horticultural chase. Today, amongst the vibrant displays of chrysanthemums I found an Acca sellowiana and a variegated Olearia traverii. The sublime nestling amongst the ridiculous.