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The new hour-long GW.

(248 Posts)
shovetheholly Mon 19-Sep-16 08:47:00

What are your thoughts?

I am really loving the new format. I like the way they are focusing not just on huge, uber-wealthy properties but on some small back gardens. I like the mix of stunningly beautiful, expertly-achieved gardens and amateur eccentricity. And I particularly like the focus back on technique, and doing things. It's lovely to see Carol Klein treated by the camera like the expert she is, instead of a gurning idiot pointing out that the top of the plant is called the "leaves" and the bottom is called the "root". I also find myself really warming to Adam Frost.

Lorelei76 Mon 19-Sep-16 21:44:59

Ive only just seen a half hour one on catch up, can see it how it would stretch to an hour quite easily, it flew by
I can also see why a mate told me she wants to marry Monty Don grin

GreenGoth89 Mon 19-Sep-16 21:59:15

It's a joy to watch but not so keen on the woman looking at the expert amateur gardens - just a tad too condescending for my liking. More on veg would be good too - and FFS let month talk more about organic gardening - most people with allotments have allotments because they want organic fruit and veg! (Btw I just watch DP garden and tell him what monty said, I don't get involved, so maybe I'm not entitled to an opinion).

shovetheholly Tue 20-Sep-16 07:24:06

Every woman is entitled to an opinion on gardening greengoth!

I agree that the woman doing the amateur gardens is condescending. I like the segment, but not the presenter.

I do also WISH they would tackle climate change more, and sustainability, and organics too. I do feel like they are playing to a demographic here - the magazine is full of the most awful letters from people who are deniers. It's not OK to let some out-of-date, anti-scientific bunch of idiots set the agenda here, just because they happen to be the ones who currently watch the show. They need to reach out to new demographics, and I feel this is a good start.

Iamthinking Tue 20-Sep-16 13:46:22

I think it is edging in the right direction, it was really time for a shake up.

Still too much out of focus and spinning camera work, when I just want to stare at something and take it in without getting sea sick.

Lincolnshire man is brilliant, and I am consumed with jealousy at his gorgeous house and garden.

The small and urban garden bits have been lame which is a shame as that would speak to the majority of people in the country, wouldn't it? The vertical garden where the woman just shoved in loads of different plants into pockets where they would outgrow the space in a month and there was no thought to seasonality or how big they would get or how they would all sit together. That was daft and patronising.
Also, the front garden in Liverpool was a total dogs dinner and no skill or design sense was required.

Tbh I have had it with Monty and his huge garden we have been with him for years and he takes up too much of the show. I think they need new, fresher people, so further shake up is required.

shovetheholly Tue 20-Sep-16 13:53:55

Yes, I was a bit horrified by that vertical planter. I was wailing "BUT WHAT ABOUT WATERING??!" at the telly. Those things dry out like billyo. They are as bad as hanging baskets. The trouble is, people will imitate, find everything dies, and then get put off gardening.

The thing I like about the Adam Frost segments is that they are actually showing him doing then hard landscaping. It's so vital at so many sites.

Lorelei76 Tue 20-Sep-16 14:45:05

I haven't seen it yet but when you say "vertical planter" do you mean things like this?

Was it suggested to someone who only has a tiny space for gardening? If so, I can see why. Things like growth and seasonality aren't really issue if you have a tiny space that you have to keep changing - this is why I've been asking questions incessantly on this board myself grin

As for watering, again, if you are able to water daily then you do. mum's getting too old to cope with her garden but I did the hanging baskets this year - she loves her hanging baskets, again maybe if you have a huge garden and don't need anything at other levels you don't bother? - she and dad between them watered them daily, it was fine. They still look pretty perky in fact (the baskets, not mum and dad..well they look fairly perky for their age and health I guess...)!

mumsnit Tue 20-Sep-16 21:55:56

I like it too! Each segment feels more relaxed and meaty rather than a rushed half hour.

Yes, that was like the vertical planter they used Lorelei Agree works well for a balcony/patio but if you forgot about the watering for a day or so I don't imagine the plants would survive for too long in hot weather!

Really enjoy the bits about ordinary/small gardens as just so much more relevant to me and what I could ever try to achieve. That and Monty's garden of course!! I do get a bit bored with the huge estates/stately home gardens they often cover tbh!

..and how much money must Adam Frost have to afford that lovely house and garden envy

almondfinger Tue 20-Sep-16 22:26:57

I think Adam is being lined up to take Monty's place. I really like him.

Do find that blonde woman condescending. I tune out when she is doing her bit. Agree, the vertical planter and small front garden in pots were rubbish. No real information on the plants and why she chose them apart from 'Oohh, don't these look fab?' Actually, no they dont. Joe Swift always gets on my goat, he's just so keen!

I think Monty's garden is looking a tad out of control this year. And the mound is always a disaster no matter what he tries to do with it.

Love Monty, looking forward to Adam.

bookbook Tue 20-Sep-16 23:15:12

I am enjoying the fact that is just a bit less frenetic, but that woman with the plants in pots and vertical planting - they were just bunged in - I too was shouting at the tv...I felt sorry for the plants.
I really like Adam Frost, and agree that it does look like a gentle push into a new garden. After all Monty was ill wasn't he a couple of years back.
I like the idea of a bit more depth to each segment - everything gets skimmed over to my mind these days ( Old and grumpy...!) It just makes new gardeners have unrealistic expectations of how much work is involved.

shovetheholly Wed 21-Sep-16 07:42:56

lorelei - but you are way, way, way more diligent that most gardeners in a small space! Many beginners who aren't in the habit just forget about hanging baskets and vertical planters. Or simply underestimate how intensive they are in terms of the care and feeding you have to provide. Witness the number of dead-looking hanging baskets you see every year! I do think that perhaps working with more drought-tolerant plants might make sense for these people- I'd maybe have done pots with succulents instead.

I also think it would have been good for them to show how that vertical fence that they were fastening the planter too was constructed, because it was quite clever and simple and the kind of thing someone with virtually no DIY experience could have given a go. You could even show how to build something very like it (perhaps a bit less elegant) by breaking up and reusing a free palette. That's the kind of thing Geoff Hamilton would have done. He'd have been breaking out the hammer and nails!

shovetheholly Wed 21-Sep-16 07:45:33

Oh, and almond - I've always thought Longmeadow is a right mess in design terms. The mound is a particular disaster, but the centrepiece, the jewel garden, is awful too. I don't mind a bit of free-form gardening, but it's too much that way.

I have also had enough of his lyrical rhapsodizing about things - I find it naff and a bit like the word-equivalent of Emma Bridgewater. (I think I might just have managed to offend half of Mumsnet with that comment).

Kidnapped Wed 21-Sep-16 10:41:27

Is this a permanent thing, the hour-long show?

I must confess that I thought they'd just shoved two half-hour shows together for the past few weeks, with GW having missed loads of weeks due to the Olympics over the summer and things.

I'm not overly keen on the Let's Pop off to Poshington Hall Gardens segments that they have every week.

As I newish gardener, I really need the Get This Done This Weekend stuff. Would like to see more of that really. And the veg growing. But I do understand that the majority of the audience are already familiar with the more basic stuff so don't need to revisit it every week.

shovetheholly Wed 21-Sep-16 11:13:59

It's always good to be reminded, though, kidnapped - there are so many plants, you're always new to some. I do like the focus on propagation and seed sowing and technical stuff also.

I don't mind the poshington stuff. Which is odd, because normally I hate that kind of thing (don't get me started on Downton). I think it's because you're often seeing the work of a gardener or a designer, not the posh. And some of those gardeners are the best there is.

Iamthinking Wed 21-Sep-16 11:34:12

I would like more depth too to each segment. For example, with the vertical gardening bit they could have addressed the fixing to the wall/weight, the structure that it would fix to, the amount of watering required, irrigation systems, have a selection of flowers for particular aspects & conditions, then they could have mentioned how long each would last before being replaced...set people's expectations before they go out and splurge on one and 12 assorted plants, and then become disillusioned.

shovetheholly I totally agree about Monty's rhapsodising

bookbook Wed 21-Sep-16 19:42:49

I think the hour long is for the rest of the series, if I remember rightly Monty saying.
I have been gardening for years, but do like the basic info still. And I loved Geoff Hamilton. Not everyone has lots of spare cash to just go out and buy what they want. They have to make do and mend, re-use etc.
What has always rather annoyed me in general, is the presenter ( whichever one in the past few series) showing you what to do - say plant a shrub, and it is patently obvious someone has prepped it already.
I'm not a fan of looking at the big gardens either. I would rather see the small gardens that most people have in reality, with the real life constraints most have too.
On a side note - Monty gives my DH the rage. He says he doesn't use secateurs correctly - he is always pulling the blade away as he starts to squeeze the handles to cut . A heinous crime in DH's eyes grin

Lorelei76 Wed 21-Sep-16 22:22:57

I've only just seen this show recently so I've watched 2 x half hour and now an hour long one.

I thought the half hour went really fast. the hour was good. I really like monty and I didn't like Adam so I hope he's not being lined up as a replacement. I've only just found monty! As an aside I would like to visit Kew again before winter but no idea how to choose a quiet time, I'm far away so morning not ideal. I bet they filmed when it was closed to the public.

shovetheholly Thu 22-Sep-16 07:23:51

I STILL miss Geoff Hamilton every time the show is on book! And I do agree about the preparation. One of the first things non-gardeners say to me is 'I watched Gardeners' World, but my soil isn't like that and I can't get stuff to grow in the same way, it all dies'. And I think - that's because they haven't often shown all the preparation work, which is the real foundation of everything else. I very much liked the recent segment on the tired, neglected border with poor soil for that reason. What they didn't emphasize, though, is how you have to keep adding compost to very thin soil for years!

My DH is the same about the cutting thing - in fact, it is a moment of relaxation on our household when Monty puts down the secateurs and starts doing knots as that is something he is good at (hangover from being a jeweller?) My parents wouldn't even watch the old version of the show - they are in their 60s, but they definitely felt it was geared towards an older demographic, and was 'too full of talking, and not enough doing'. I'm trying to get them back into watching the new show, on the grounds I think they will like Adam Frost loads more. grin

I wish they did more of a deliberate segment on 'gardening on a budget'. I feel like the previous incarnation of a show had moved away from gardening altogether and into some kind of weird, posh flower arranging where the lady of the house keeps her hands perfectly clean and simply orders the gardener where to put things. That is NOT gardening, and nor does it reflect the lifestyles of the majority of the population. smile My guess is most people who aren't very elderly or ill are doing their own hedge cutting, digging and landscaping on a constrained budget.

Lorelei76 Thu 22-Sep-16 11:00:00

Monty used to be a jeweller? that's interesting.

I'd love gardening on a budget to feature in that. As I said on another thread, because I didn't know anything. I saw some of the offers of 125 bulbs for £10 or whatever and just thought, well I can't use those - not realising that then 8 tulip bulbs would be £2.50 in Homebase for example.

bookbook Thu 22-Sep-16 12:18:28

I hadn't known he was a jeweller either. I did know he had serious MH problems, which is when he used gardening as therapy. So I presume that is what the jewel garden is all about. Really not keen on that - all those box hedges and tight squares with the flowers in the middle always look a bit squeezed in.
I am in my 60's now smile , but I want the info on growing from seed etc. I am coming to that late, as gardening is as much about variety and taste , so to get what you want is much easier with seeds. And nurseries sell you what they want, not necessarily what you want! And I want to know why my sweetcorn only had 6 germinate out of 24, and why the lovage didn't germinate at all, though the borage next to it was like a forest! And whether they need to be in a greenhouse, outside, in the fridge first /soaked....... There is an infinite amount I don't know, and would love to see and be discussed.
I don't know if you ever saw Geoffrey Smith - he is my hero, and I still refer back to his common sense approach.
My favourite quote of his - " Buy a £10 plant - dig it a £20 hole " grin

shovetheholly Thu 22-Sep-16 12:28:28

book - Oh you are a woman after my own heart!

In the interim, while GW sort out their act on sowing etc. this book is brilliant: Creative Propagation, A Grower's Guide by Peter Thompson. Owlsmart have a copy for about £3.50 (they are good, though the books take a while to come as they are posted from the USA).

The big revelation from me from it is that with some seeds you don't need to wash the pots! Brilliant.

Lorelei76 Thu 22-Sep-16 13:13:34

I haven't seen this jewel garden but then again I've seen about 3 editions of this show...

never heard of Geoff I'm afraid.

it's funny, there's obviously a limited amount of use of learning this for me - with the small balcony - but it's good because work is so dull and now I can plan gardens in my head, lol - and I found actually just watching GW quite therapeutic.

shovetheholly Thu 22-Sep-16 13:25:06

lorelei - hahahaha, you have the gardening bug! Ever thought of signing up for an allotment? smile Most let you grow fruit and flowers as well as veg.

If you are quite young, you probably wouldn't remember Geoff. He was a gardening legend of my childhood! Just a lovely, down-to-earth, twinkly-eyed, practical fella. He died very suddenly, and I was distraught.

Lorelei76 Thu 22-Sep-16 13:30:12

shove, yes, I talked about the possibility of signing up for an allotment on another thread but I def won't be doing it now (costs, lack of transport, etc.)

I didn't pay any attention to gardening till this year so that's probably why I've not heard of Geoff. Mine is a typical London outer burb balcony, I've lived here for years with it empty as I was working 2 jobs, commuting and very rarely actually sat out there because I didn't get much of a chance.

bookbook Thu 22-Sep-16 17:51:15

I have ordered that book shove - looks good , and DH is into cuttings !
Gardening is a bug for life Lorelei - I take it there was no joy in asking if people just wanted a helping hand at your local allotment site ( I seem to remember you were going on an open day or some such?) Is it possible to see if there is a charity around you - there is one here for people to help disabled/elderly with gardens or even volunteers at a local house and garden ( NT or some such) anf Hugh Fearnley had a thing going trying to match up spare garden space with keen gardeners without a garden. I will see if I can find a link.

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