As a girl in the 1970’s my mum bought me a moss-green corduroy trouser suit, and I looked like the bee’s knees. Or rather I imaged that I did. It was rather avant garde for St Ives CP Junior School. There were “looks”. Since then I have allowed the latest trends to get lukewarm before I decide whether to adopt them or not. Never at the cutting edge, somewhere just behind, at a safe distance.
Fashion in horticulture I have tried to avoid altogether. Of course none of us are immune to the great marketing machine. We get sucked into the current wave and are carried along unintentionally. Generally I manage to stay out of trouble. A visit to Hampton Court Flower Show sealed the contract. What seemed like dozens of people staggered back and forth, parading their new purchase, the standard shrimp willow, Salix integra. It was a rather disturbing sight, watching these bizarre trees bobbing past at regular intervals. My reaction was “Why on earth would you want to buy the same plant as everyone else?”.
In May 2011 Anemone ‘White Swan’ won Chelsea Flower Show Plant of the Year. In August 2017 I liberated one from the bargain bin of a garden centre. I call it fashionably late.