Lara Messer at The Garden House April 29 2015

This week we had a very special visitor to Wednesday Gardening Group. Food photographer and stylist Lara Messer  - who I am so delighted to call my penpal and now true friend, came to visit Brighton all the way from Glasgow.

We had a lovely week hanging out in Brighton, showing Lara all the best cafes, bars and vintage shops and as well as helping out at the Garden House open day on Sunday, she came along to Wednesday Gardening Group too.

Here is Lara to tell you all about what we got up to...  

It's been such a pleasure to come to beautiful Brighton this week, (albeit a little colder than I expected!)  Having the joy of attending The Garden House open day was wonderful.  We welcomed 100's of garden enthusiasts, shared our passion for flowers and enjoyed delicious cakes.  As a photographer, I often have to seek beauty in different areas. Although, at the Garden House, beauty is in abundance and in every corner.  I feel truly privileged to have been involved in such an inspiring day. 

This week at the Gardening Club, we snuggled under the pergola and talked about our tasks for the day. Learning from Bridge is like learning from a gardening guru - she will have all the answers to your plant-problems and explain them in the most relatable way, leaving you armed with knowledge and a furthered love for gardening.  From my two hours, I've picked up tips for pricking out herbs, planting dahlias and experiencing the precious rose hip.  

For the herbs, we planted up coriander, dill and savory (smells like thyme).  An extraordinary discovery for me was that our dill had pink leaves which, even though it's pretty to look at, actually means the plant was lacking in nitrogen.  I love the science behind gardening.

Planting the rose hips was incredibly interesting. The gardening group began this process back in September.   Today we took the little seedlings and planted them in tiny pots.  My miniature loving heart was very happy with this task! 

We potted up the knobbly gnarly dahlias too.  Starting with a layer of compost, followed by the dahlia, more compost and topped with horticultural grit.  Horticultural grit is a lesson I will take home with me to my Glasgow garden.  It helps with keeping the slugs/snails away (however cute they may be) and locks in the moisture. 

We finished off the day with Bridge giving us all some gardening gifts.  Tulips, bluebells and any other seedlings that she had excess of.  We brought back a beautiful bunch of bluebells for Claire and Harry's flat.  Is there anything more delightful than garden gifts? 


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