Emmeline Thrower - Gardener


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The Garden of Designer Bunny Guinness

Posted by vamachara on October 17, 2016 at 11:45 AM Comments comments (0)

House and Garden magazine (October 2016 issue) wrote a little something about one of the gardens I help with and I got a mention.  

Read the article and see some photos online here:  The Garden of Designer Bunny Guinness

Applewhite Garden Design

Posted by vamachara on October 5, 2016 at 12:30 AM Comments comments (0)

I met Nikki and Emmy from Applewhite Garden Design yesterday. They are working on some plans for a customers garden and I'm quite excited about it.  Nikki and her team are very much involved with the garden at Belvoir Castle which was recently covered in the Telegraph

Daffodil Blindness

Posted by vamachara on April 1, 2016 at 2:45 AM Comments comments (0)

A few years ago I was given some daffodil bulbs.  I think a large number of them had been blind and that was why they were passed on to me.  Not knowing what variety they were I'm pretty sure putting them in my lawn was an extra challenge.  They were free, so I popped them in and didn't worry too much about whether they survived or not.

The first year they mostly flowered and I liked the circular pattern of the planting.  The next year they didn't do so well.  Out of about 80 bulbs I think I only had about 3 flowers.  A quick google and I read that feeding with Tomorite can help with blindness.  With no instructions on when or how often to feed I waited for the daffs to die down completely. Then, guessing where the daffs might have been I gave the ground a good feed.  I think I did it once again a few weeks later. 

This year I'm very pleased with my daffs.  I would say that 60-70% of them have flowered.  I'm surprised they've done so well.

I'm planning to feed them again once they have died down.  It won't be a precise timing, just when it crosses my mind.  

Getting organised

Posted by vamachara on March 27, 2016 at 7:05 AM Comments comments (0)

I have quite a small veggie area and don't always use up whole packets of seeds.  I hate waste so I use up my old seeds before buying new.

The germination rate will probably be lower with old seeds so sowing a few extra is a good idea.  Heather Rhoades at www.gardeningknowhow.com says "Using seeds from old vegetable seed packets will produce vegetables that are just as nutritious as those from current season seeds"

I thought I'd be more organised this spring so that I know what seeds I already have and what seeds I need to buy.

I needed a container suitable for organising my seeds so decided to make my own out of old bits of laminate flooring (it's just coated mdf).  I made the box about the size of a cd storage box and cut dividers out of the bits of cardboard you find inside wine boxes.  I raided the cardboard box store at my local supermarket for those.  I gave the box a lick of gloss paint to cheer it up and make it look less like laminate flooring. ta dah!


Posted by vamachara on November 4, 2015 at 4:50 AM Comments comments (0)

Autumn is a strange time for me.  The changes in the garden are so beautiful yet I feel so sad to know the growing season is slowing to winter.

The dark is prominent and makes getting up and out so much more difficult.  I find that once I'm outside I feel so much better for it.  It's really worth the effort as being outside has so many benefits for the mind, body and soul.

This smoke bush (cotinus coggygria) in Bunny's garden reminded me how I love the changes of the seasons

Hive Talking

Posted by vamachara on February 11, 2015 at 4:20 AM Comments comments (0)

Support landless beekeepers in your area by providing space in your garden for a hive. 

I found this via a sticker on the top of my co-op honey jar


Summer Fruit Mousse Cake

Posted by vamachara on October 8, 2014 at 7:15 AM Comments comments (0)

I picked so many raspberries this year, a few strawberries and some blackcurrants too.  I put the excess into the freezer and as soon as the autumn weather arrived I fancied some comfort food - something summery.  I'm allergic to cows milk so after discovering "Soyatoo! Soy Whip" I knew I could invent something lovely to remind me of summer.

It's all an experiment which I plan to perfect but the first go was pretty amazing!  This is how I made it.  If you are allergic to cow's milk then please check the packets for milk before using any of the following ingredients.

The Base

 3oz Stork hard margarine

 6oz Gingernuts (I use Sainsburys basics gingernuts)

The Mousse

135g pack of blackcurrant jelly (I used Hartleys)

7-8oz frozen fruit from the garden (raspberries, strawberries and blackcurrants)

few extra nice bits of fruit to pop under the mousse

300ml packet of Soyatoo! Soy Whip


Defrost the fruit then mush it up with a blender.  Push it through a sieve once or twice to remove pips.  Put in the fridge.

Line a 20cm wide, deep dish with foil.

Make the base

Crush the gingernuts - I do it in a plastic sandwich bag to avoid making too much mess.

Gently melt the marg in a medium saucepan then take off the heat and mix in the crushed gingernuts, maybe crushing them a bit more if you've got any big bits.

Tip it into the lined dish and pat it down so it's even and packed in reasonably tight.

Chill the base in the fridge for at least 1 hour - Chill out yourself too -  disappear into the garden for a bit, chat with the neighbour, have a cuppa

Make the mousse

Cut up the jelly and put in a small saucepan with 1 tablespoon of water.  Melt over a low heat, mixing it until it's all smooth then take off the heat.

Whisk the "Soyatoo! Soy Whip"  with an electric whisk on full power for 2 minutes.  It will double in volume.

Fold in the jelly and then fold in the fruit puree.

Take the base out of the fridge and place some bits of fruit on top of the base, around the edge of the dish.

Pour the mousse mixture over the top and level it out a bit.

Chill in the fridge for at least 2 hours.  I'm very impatient so I set my timer and then go do something else, instead of hopping around the kitchen shouting "is it set yet?!?"

My friend Sam suggests a fruit compote or couli to serve with it.  Anyone with a good recipe please get in touch.


Posted by vamachara on March 20, 2014 at 4:45 PM Comments comments (0)

Highgrove - A Garden Celebrated by HRH The Prince of Wales and Bunny Guinness

I've got my signed copy already!

Release date 10 April 2014 available from www.orionbooks.co.uk

A Shady Spot

Posted by vamachara on July 25, 2013 at 12:55 AM Comments comments (0)

Our garden is quite exposed and on a hot sunny day it's difficult to find a cool spot to sit in... so we created a seated area under the pear trees.  To see the complete build click here

Our greenhouse in the Telegraph

Posted by vamachara on February 21, 2013 at 12:25 AM Comments comments (0)

Our greenhouse was featured in the Telegraph.  Read the full article here