I have loved pottering in gardens for ever so, when many years ago, we bought a large Victorian house in north London with, for inner London, a very large garden, I was in seventh heaven. For around 15 years my gardening enthusiasm had to restrict itself to a series of pots while the garden became a football field. But when I got it back, I went back to pottering happily and posted the results of my pottering on a page on my blog.
These horticultural notes then migrated to the FoodsMatter newsletter and, for a number of years, the fortnightly FM newsletter would always end with ‘notes from the garden.’ You can now find these on two immensely long pages, Michelle’s garden at Lawn Road, logging the garden through the seasons from around 2012 until I left the house in 2019. Periodically this would be enlivened by visits to other gardens or the reports on the very active wildlife community that lived in the garden.
In February 2020 I moved to Highgate, to a another Victorian house with a garden, not as large as that at Lawn Road but within 5 minutes walk of Hampstead Heath. And then coronavirus struck and we were all locked down in our homes. However, we were allowed out for an hour’s exercise each day.
Needless to say, I took full advantage of this allowance to steam around Hampstead Heath, acutely aware of how lucky I was to be able to do so. And almost on day one it occurred to me that if I were to take pictures of the heath in all its greenness and post them on my blog, then those who were not so fortunate and and were literally locked in their houses or flats, could at least see some pictures of green spaces even if they couldn’t get to them.
Images soon were joined by short videos. And then my daughter in law suggested that I start an Instagram page – and thus was born #WalksonHampsteadHeath.
Lockdown has now eased but I am aware that I have a number of subscribers who, even if they are now able to get out, enjoy our walks. So although I am no longer posting every day, I am still doing so frequently – and, to be honest, would miss it if I didn’t.
However, some rationalistion of the blog did seem to be called for as the Walks were sharing it with in depth discussions of labeling regulations for major allergens and, indeed, our salon music. Hence the creation of Walks on Hampstead Heath – and around many gardens. I do hope you enjoy it.
If you wish to contact me with comments – or ideas – please email me.