Friday, 1 July 2011

Waste of petrol and time

Feeling very grumpy. Continuing my attempt to have a bit of a rest, rather than work in the garden this afternoon I thought I would treat myself and visit Larch Cottage at Melkinthorpe.

I shouldn't have bothered. The biggest traffic jam around Penrith that I have seen since moving here (half an hour to get from Rheged to the A6 junction off the second roundabout) followed by a very poor selection of climbers. When I asked a member of staff if there were any other clematis elsewhere I was told " this is all of them, you should have come two months ago when we got our stock in".

Sorry lady, I don't think so. What I will do is wait until 22nd July and add to Tesco's coffers when a huge new Dobbies Garden Centre opens at Orton Grange. It's nearer, will be a much simpler journey, easier parking and there will be more choice.


  1. Don't you just hate incidents like that? Back in the spring I wanted some plants and decided to go to "Alice's" to get them. She has good plants, reasonably priced and they always thrive. Problem is, there's a $3.50 toll to get to her place and then $3.50 to get back. So, on a lovely Friday I took hubby's truck and headed over there, paying my money which I truly resented. SHE WAS CLOSED! No explanation, nothing, just gate closed across the driveway. So, back home and paid my money again. Really ticked me off. And besides, it's a good jaunt up there.

  2. Absolutely! The Universe definitely telling us we weren't meant to be buying plants. How far did you travel? Mine was a 75 mile round trip which is no joke with current petrol prices.

  3. I must say I've been catching up on your last several posts and your energy and drive leave me practically wilting from your long list of accomplishments! Well done (and well doing). Sorry to hear that a little downtime turned into a grumble (75m round trip? Good grief!!).

    Meanwhile your efforts on the garden front are sterling and I look forward eagerly to reading more.

    I smiled when I read how you leave the clover and heals-all for the bees. I leave the whole center of a ring garden (102' long, 70' wide) strictly as a meadow for the bees: violets, dandelion, white clover, heals all, violas, etc.) and only mow it occasionally.

    Um, a question. Just what is an "LP" ?

  4. Well, I must admit your drive was longer than mine, but it was close to 60 miles round trip, plus that danged toll. And that truck uses lots more fuel than my little car. And they wonder why nobody wants to use that stupid bridge and avoid it like the plague when they can.

  5. Hello Kris, if you're wilting how do you think I feel? Thanks for your nice words about my non-lawn mowing.

    An "LP" is a workhorse, friend, saviour and at present, a very essential element of current progress. He's also a private person so I don't use his name, just initials.

    FFG: hope you have more choice of nurseries near to you than I do.

  6. Bummocks! Makes you spit, doesn't it? I hope the new Dobbies is an improvement.

  7. Cheers VH, I hope Dobbies is an improvement too. I know it is fashionable in some quarters to slag off garden centres in favour of 'proper nurseries' but in the absence of much choice around here, I'll take all I can get.

  8. Ooops, and we weren't in to provide refreshments either! I have to say (and I'm probably repeating myself) that whilst I love looking around Larch Cottage; I think their shrub section leaves a lot to be desired. They seem to major on Hardy P's and just have the shrubs as a bit of extra. BTW - Penrith is a nightmare at the mo as half of the through roads are closed due to Saino's and Booths being built.

  9. Oh, is that's what is going on in Penrith? Nightmare is about right - haven't been in a traffic jam like that since we left Hampshire (thank goodness).

    Agree with you about Larch Cottage's shrubs, and the majority of the stock was looking very dry and in need of care.

  10. Don't hold your breath on plant range from the new Dobbie/Tesco - if it is anything like the one near(ish) us, you'll love it only if you want to buy from a discount clothing concession, a (VERY EXPENSIVE) farm shop, books, a hot tub or a conservatory. Actually growing things doesn't seem to get that much of a look-in.

    It's a 50 mile round trip, too - although it is redeemed by the nearby Church End micro brewery.

  11. Bummocks as Flummery would say.

    It probably will be a clone of the one near you - the business model for these stores cannot do diversity. That's why I expect to see annual bedding plants in March (last frost date here = June), olive trees and other suitable flora!

    BUT, ever the optimist I'll still turn up as soon as they open

  12. Me again! Don't you like the Dodds Garden Centre at Keswick ,,, I got some lovely plants there last year. Really annoying when places are closed ,,, that happened to us a week last Monday when we returned to the lovely walled nursery/garden centre near Malton I was telling you about!

  13. Jill, we have found Dodd very disappointing. It is understandable - the business has been up for sale for over two years. Finally changed hands in the Spring and the new owners have been in about 2 months. I went in recently and the chap admitted his plant selection was sadly lacking and needed to be improved. I'll pop in again next time I pass.


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