A country seed swap in a hundred year old barn

February 21, 2015

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Inspiration abounds!

I found a barn built in 1911, next to a beautiful house, in the middle of fields and stream, with a garden show and seed swap taking place inside, and a golden eagle in the trees outside watching over the proceedings. How wonderful is that?

Actually, it’s not all my doing. Michelle, a sweet friend on Facebook, posted about the event in one of my favourite groups, Hometalk Gardening, and then I knew I wanted to go. Also, my friend Thomas Hobbs, whose nursery Southlands I’m always at, was giving a talk which I didn’t want to miss.

We had a good mooch around and then headed to the relative quiet of the mezzanine between talks to have some lunch.

Just before Tom started his talk, Michelle came over and introduced herself to us. I was thrilled to meet my FB friend, and now can’t wait to see her again, soon. And, the best news ever, Tom announced that he’s writing his third book about his move from the city to 20 acres in the country, complete with pregnant squatters, two grow ops, Corona, an abandoned dog (who is theirs now), 17 broken down cars, and several feral lamas. Hurry and write it Tom. I can’t wait. 😀

We came away with a special witch hazel Corylopsis sinensis which Chloe fell in love with, some raw, local honey, two little cowslips, (love those little primroses from the forests of my childhood), and some local spuds to plant between my crazy garlic plants. We also, as it turned out, rescued three vine maple seedlings, which we’ll plant up in pots and eventually plant at the cabin by the pond.

The most glorious day. I really want to move to the country now.

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  • Reply Rosemarie February 21, 2015 at 10:55 pm

    Thank you for sharing – I had wanted to go to it and also hear Tom’s talk but was involved with a beach cleanup.

    The pics and your comments made me feel I was/had been there.

    It’s always great to add things to our gardens. Will you/your garden be on the tour this spring?


    • Reply Veronica February 22, 2015 at 3:14 pm

      Hi Rosemarie, a beach cleanup is certainly a wonderful thing to do. I’m glad you felt like you were there with me, and I’m glad I could bring that to you. I think that probably I will open the garden again…if they’ll have me…lol. Nothing like leaving it to the last minute…huh? 😀

  • Reply marianbonelli February 21, 2015 at 11:42 pm

    Wonderful, what a beautiful day, and thank you for bringing us with you amiga mxx

    • Reply Veronica February 22, 2015 at 3:11 pm

      I loved it! Had to share because it was such a beautiful day. 😀 XX

  • Reply Patrice A. February 22, 2015 at 12:28 am

    how i would have loved to go there!!
    wonderful place and all those seeds….
    thanks for sharing!

    • Reply Veronica February 22, 2015 at 3:10 pm

      I would have loved to meet you there and give you a great big hug! X

  • Reply Mona February 22, 2015 at 2:05 am

    Goodness, what a wonderful barn! And seed swapping too! Lucky you to have access to places like that 🙂
    Thanks for stopping by my blog – I’d be happy to send some japanese indigo seeds to you – and you can most certainly have more than five! Just let me know where to send them. Thanks, Mona

    • Reply Veronica February 22, 2015 at 3:02 pm

      Oh my gosh Mona, thank you so much! I’ll email. A couple of my friends from different parts of the world grew and harvested their indigo, and then used ti with various results. I’ve tried some eco printing and loved ti to pieces. Can’t wait to baby those little seeds. Thank you a million times over. XXX 😀

  • Reply Gill February 22, 2015 at 3:22 am

    what a wonderful place to go and visit. I too can’t wait to read your friend Tom’s book, sounds as though it will be very entertaining!! However my most favourite part of your post was the photo of the cowslips, like you brought back lovely memories of picking them in the wild, along with bluebells. Very pleasant memories brought back to me on a Sunday morning, thank you.

    Gill in Canada

    • Reply Veronica February 22, 2015 at 2:58 pm

      It was so wonderful Gill. You know, Tom has two previous books, Shocking Beauty and Jewel Box Garden. Both show his amazing city garden and other gardens. Do you miss the bluebell forests? I only get to see them occasionally when I’m back in Oxfordshire at the right time, but isn’t that the most spectacular sight? Nothing quite like it in Canada…except for my garden right here…lol. 😀

      • Reply Gill February 22, 2015 at 3:14 pm

        I do miss the bluebell forests, but home is here in Canada now……..thanks for the info on the books.

  • Reply debrashewhoseeks February 22, 2015 at 6:55 am

    That barn has been so beautifully restored! And I love cowslips too — they grew wild around my childhood home and it was always a special treat to find them growing underfoot. So many wild flowers then — so few now.

    • Reply Veronica February 22, 2015 at 2:46 pm

      It really is beautifully restored. Thomas, who has a run-down barn on his country property, was asking who restored it so he can hire them. I know what you mean about the wildflowers. Shall we start a “bring back the wildflowers” movement? I’d be into that. X

  • Reply Bungalow Hostess February 22, 2015 at 8:17 am

    It was Seedy Saturday here but I was not able to attend as I am helping a dear friend clear out her MIL’s estate.
    Your event sounds like a bit of magic and that barn is amazing!
    Thomas Hobbs’ books are favourites of mine and I am so pleased to hear he is writing a new book! How fortunate that you met up with a lovely gardening friend to spend the day with at the event. It is such fun making new acquaintences through a shared passion and gardeners are such keeners that sharing feels natural.
    Enjoy the rest of your weekend.

    • Reply Veronica February 22, 2015 at 2:41 pm

      Oh hostess, I’m sorry for your friend. Big hugs to her. That’s a difficult thing to have to do. I love Tom’s books too. He’s such a lovely guy. We’ve been friends for such a long time. It was so lovely and so unexpected to meet Michelle, and now I can’t wait to see her again. How wonderful that such lovely people as we are…lol…have a chance to get to know each other thru social media. 😀

  • Reply Julie@frogpondfarm February 22, 2015 at 10:11 am

    What a great venue! Love the pics .. I would have left with bagfulls ????

    • Reply Veronica February 22, 2015 at 2:32 pm

      Oh my gosh Julie, I almost did! But I’ve only got a city garden here, so have to show some restraint. 🙁 Hey, in my soon to be next life, I’m so buying some acres in the country and then I’m going to go nuts! 😀

  • Reply daryledelstein February 25, 2015 at 11:11 am

    looks/sounds like a really wonderful experience…

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