Is it as easy as TV gardeners say?

It’s easy to procrastinate and make excuses for not doing something.  Do you ever hear yourself saying any of these?  ‘Oh, I won’t try growing any vegetables: the cabbages always get eaten by the caterpillars.’ Or ‘There are so many problems with pests and diseases’ or ‘I haven’t got the time’.

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On the other hand, some gardeners merrily till the land and plant their crops only to experience disappointment when rain stops play or the bugs bite and the result is a failed crop.  Blight, wilting, disease, drowning and root rot are all challenges that you must learn to overcome.

Alan Titchmarsh recently wrote in The Telegraph about the complaint from viewers who were blaming TV gardeners for making it look all too easy.  It’s a tough one because if they made it look difficult, who would bother?  Surely a case of you’re damned if you do and damned if you don’t.

In reality we all have to take responsibility for ourselves.  After all, whoever gets it right first time off?  You can expect a few mistakes, a bit of trial and error – as we tell our children, it’s all part of the learning.

Alan kindly reminds us that seeds and plants want to grow – we just have to learn how to give them the correct support.

He dolefully comments on the problems of, not just today’s youth, but today’s general busy population’s requirement for instant gratification.  Waiting for a bean to grow isn’t half as quick as sending and receiving a text or ordering an online shopping delivery.

Alan talks a lot about allotment holders – it was they who made the TV gardening complaint, it would seem – and maybe that is a different market to those with their own plot and greenhouse to boot.  The proximity of your own garden certainly makes it easier to take the ‘little and often’ approach to tending your beds that Alan suggests and failure is less likely than if you have to travel to your piece of land.

Overall, Alan concludes that the benefits of growing your own food are far greater than any disasters, and that’s got to be worth the effort.