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Sue Tatman

Sue Tatman

  • Date Joined: 11 Jun 2007

Tuesday - Judgement day - Lows and Highs

Posted by Sue Tatman on 17 Jul 2007 at 09:11 PM

Tuesday, the day the gardens are judged, starts with a disaster. Somehow a hose has been left running overnight and our garden is flooded. The sunken seating area is a foot deep in muddy water with the log pile floating on top. It's a nightmare. The garden has to be baled out, the log piles re-built, the gravel dug out, washed and replaced, and all the wood and paving cleaned. This is in addition to the last minute primping and preening necessary to prepare a show garden for the RHS judges. 

The organisers are sympathetic, and agree for us to be judged last, giving us more time. We also get sympathy and offers of help from many other sources. Reaseheath College offer to send a couple of students to help, but in the end there are half a dozen of them helping. One of the wonderful thing about Tatton is how friendly everyone is, and willing to help each other out. 

A couple of short but heavy downpours make the work even more difficult. It is all very stressful, and very hard work, but by 1.30 the garden is as good as we can make it - just before the judges turn up. 

After judging all we can do is wait - the results are due to be announced after 6.00pm - everyone has been delayed by the appalling weather. Meanwhile I have to prepare the Cheshire Wildlife Trust stand, which is next to the garden. We built a raised bed behind the stand and I fill it with plants left over from the garden. Inside the stand we tidy up, and find some sheets of plywood to put on the ground, which is already very muddy. 

Eventually the judges return - we are awarded a SILVER-GILT! This is fantastic, and  suddenly everything seems worthwhile. Sharon produces a bottle of bubbly, so we can toast ourselves and the garden with plastic cups.

The garden looks beautiful, and has attracted many wonderful comments. I hope you will all come and see it.

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