Some time ago I had an email from Linda Jones who used to be part of the Wisley Trials, with news of the Great Dixter Plant Fair. How could I forget Linda? She has great organisational skills – well done Fergus for recruiting her to the Dixter fund raising efforts. I did not wish to go on my own so asked Anne Godfrey to join me, with Linda’s agreement. At 7am on the Saturday, Anne arrived with her van loaded with just enough room for my duvet, cut flowers, display boards, and a box of plants. We had a good journey down and arrived in good time to find ourselves on a sloping field which was slippery – would the van get stuck? All unloaded and thankfully the van moved, we were pitch no 13 ‘Judy National Collection’ and 14 for ‘Anne Daisy Roots’, with the portaloos behind! Wow, was there a lot of interest in Anne’s stall, they broke off buying to hear my talk which went well. By the end of the day Anne had sold half of her stock – well done.
There was a two hour lull from the close of the Fair until the evening meal cooked by Fergus so we were free to wander all around the gardens. The meal was very well done in the barn with all seated on straw bales. Anne had our bedding in a wheelbarrow parked outside. At the end of the evening we set off in the pitch black; holding a torch, I followed Anne and wheelbarrow to where I knew not down a long farm track, at which point I decided I was too old for this! The student accommodation was wonderful, all new rooms with ensuite bathroom. Blissful hot shower and bed. The students who gave up their room were not so lucky, one slept in the barn.
The next day the sun shone again and all went well. Anne finished with just over two boxes of plants left to illustrate her talk. I gave the plants I brought with me to Fergus himself so perhaps if he likes them they may end up in the garden. We finished at 4pm and with the van quickly loaded, off we went again, the empty trolleys rattling in the back.
A wonderful weekend, and thank you Anne for doing the driving.