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July 20th Friday
It’s not everyone that has green fingers. Indeed some would say there is some sort of mystical art at work. How often have you found that your perennials lack a certain luster or spotted a significant droop in the deportment of your daffodils?
Oh what wouldn’t all of us give to behold a beautiful brace of begonias in our back garden, possess the magic that gives us the power to nurture nature’s wonders.
We are indeed fortunate, that in Perthshire, there is such a wizard of the gardening world, sharing his magic with a county that has been blooming in an award-winning manner for decades. In him- for he is a man – we find not some well-versed spokesman, but a grafter who has been on the front line of local parks department efforts, fighting on a daily basis to give Perth it’s spectrum of colour and it’s fragrant range of diverse smells…
He is Perthy Gardner
Hiya. It’s funny eh? I’m Gardner and I’m a gairdner. Dy’see? Ken, I’m a gairdner and my name is Gardner. Weird eh? Like it was written… in a book or somethin’. Ken?
So Mr. Gardner…
PG: Perthy. Perthy Gardner, that’s me.
It’s a pleasure to meet you. How long have you been fascinated with flora and fauna?
Who are they?
Have you always been interested in cultivation?
I thought we were goin’ tae be talking about fleurs…?
How old were you when you first became fascinated?
Ah, well. Ken, the magic first happened in Cherrybank. Ah mind when I was a wean – about 6 an a hauf or thereabouts - an a picked some hydrangeas for my grannie and gave them to her for her birthday.
Was she delighted with them?
No really, they were oot her garden. I just remember a lot o’ shoutin’ – teeth flyin – and pretty soon the shoutin’ became screamin’.
Why was that?
There was a wasp in them. We didnae know she was allergic like… Her pus went up like a burst baw at McDairmid, and then she went aw thon anna fallactic wey an’ she er… well, she snuffed it. Aye… She’s deid.
Oh dear me… So your giving her flowers became quite a traumatic experience.
Well, it’s the thought that counts…
Tell us why you love your job so much?
Well, ken this… It’s coz I dinaae have tae think. I’m at ma work ken? You’re probably the same yersel’. The last thing I want is fur something tae distract me an make me think. I cannae be scunnered wi havin’ tae think. I’ll no’ hae it. When I’m oot there – on the job – it’s just me an the fleurs and the language of the earth that binds us together.
How beautifully put.
Ken? I’m like Spock, ken? Ken when he wants tae read somethin’s mind? He takes his hand and does something wi it to make it give up it’s secrets? I’m thon wey wi fleurs. When I grasp a fleur by it’s stem I ken it’s lifestory. Where it was born, who it’s mum was, what it’s had fur it’s tea and what it wants tae be when it grows up.
Do you have any ambition to climb through the ranks in Council Parks Departmental affairs?
I couldnae huv an affair. Petunia would be helluva disappointed in that. She’s no’ much to look at my Petunia, but she’s a mine. She’s mair a dandilion than a daffodil but she fair brightens up my hoose…
What hopes do you have for the future?
Well, I’d like tae get ma ain van – Just tae help me get roon a bit quicker, coz, ken, come sunshine, wind, or falling rain, I am oot there waterin’ they fleurs.
What is your secret ingredient and what would you like to be your long lasting legacy?
Well, ken? I’m glad you asked me that… I’m pretty sure that when all is said and done, what gets me through the day and makes me so successful is ma spunk.
I beg your pardon?
Spunk. That’s pretty much it. I wake up in the mornin’ and I am that full o’ it I’m fit tae burstin’.
So you start the day fairly fecund?
Dinnae be rude!… There’s nae need fur that. A lassie might be readin’ this. No I just want tae spread my spunk all over Perthshire and just watch the look on folks faces when I’m all done.
Perthy, it has been wonderful speaking to you. We’re all looking forward to seeing you in Perth In The Buff soon.
Keep sewing yer seeds folks. You can like us on Facebook - I’ve got my ain page, ken? And follow us on Twitter if you want to be fertile. Cheerybumps!