Yet another wondrous walk along the Homla canyon in Malvik , this time with Berit Børte, Marit By and Ane Mari Aakernes
I had a little time to spare on Monday 8th May 2017, before my talk in the evening in Oslo. I went for a little walk on the coastal path (kyststien) on Nesodden where my son lives. Here’s a few pictures…
The first time my garden was featured in a book was in former Norwegian TV gardener and gardener for the King, Tor Smaaland’s 2004 book “Din drømmehage”. The book was based on Tor’s travels around Norway visiting gardens and their owners. I remember his visit well as he was like a whirlwind almost running around the garden and talking at full throttle…he told me that he was a landscape architect and new little about plants and then he was gone again…so quick was he that I didn’t get a single picture of his visit! Most of the text about the plants was written by me (see pdf at the bottom of this page!).
I loved his amusing description of me and my garden (first in Norwegian below and then translated):
«Hage til å spise opp: Som Norges kanskje eneste moderne ikke-munk har engelskmannen Stephen Barstow brukt de siste tiåra på å anlegge et slags fri klosterhage ved Malvik utenfor Trondheim med noe mellom 1500-3000 planter, avhengig av hvordan vinteren har fart over hagen. Her er 30 av hans favoritter – og ganske uventet bruk av dem» ;)
(Garden to be eaten up: As perhaps Norway’s only modern non-monk, Englishman SB has over the last 10 years created a kind of free style monastery garden in Malvik outside of Trondheim with somewhere between 1,500 and 3,000 plants, dependent on the ravages of the winter. Here are 30 of his favourites and their rather unexpected uses)
You will notice quite a few of the plants that finally ended up in my book and many of which I now call Edimentals; for example: variegated ground elder (variegert skvallerkål), nodding onion (prærieløk), seiersløk (Allium victorialis), udo (Aralia cordata), giant bellflower (storklokke), daylilies (dagliljer), Hosta, golden hops (gulhumle), Malva (kattost), ostrich fern (strutseving), Bath asparagus (Ornithogalum pyrenaicum), bistort (ormrot), rubber dandelion (gummiløvetann), bulrush (dunkjevle) and nettles (nesle).
Lovely bunch of people on the two tours of my garden today! Forgot to take any pictures during the first tour, so just a couple from the second during the only shower…it had threatened to be a very wet afternoon this morning!!
050916: Added some pictures taken during the first tour by Elin Anita Mosbakk. Thank you!
Almost exactly 6 years ago (is it really that long ago?) I was delighted to have a visit from BBC gardening presenter and Guardian writer Alys Fowler. After we finished photographing the garden I took her on a tour to Vennafjellet, the closest mountain to home and we also stopped at Nævrahølet, a local swimming “hole” under a small waterfall! It was a glorious hot day in “paradise”. It’s now known as Alys’ Pool and a picture of her swimming here features in her book the Thrifty Forager!
6 years on I did the same trip with the group of Danes who have been learning about permaveggies in my garden! It was a much colder day, but two of us did venture into the water. It wasn’t as bad as feared! One thing I hadn’t noticed on Alys’ visit was that there were several plants of Mountain Queen (Saxifraga cotyledon) hanging in full flower around the waterfall!
See the video of Ostrich Fern Island below:
The rate of growth of Udo (Aralia cordata) from Japan is phenomenal in cool spring weather, even outgrowing Hablitzia tamnoides (Caucasian spinach)!
The first picture was taken by Christian Odberger during my permaveggies course and just two weeks later the plant is taller than me! The view is or less the same and the apple tree at the back is now in full bloom! The fern is ostrich fern.
On 2nd May 2016 I finally got to visit Camilla Plum and Fuglebjerggaard. Camilla is one of Scandinavia’s best known authors and broadcasters on edible gardening and cooking. It was such a beautiful day that the formal talk was abandoned in favour of an edible tour of the organic nursery and farm lead by myself and Camilla. A great crowd of knowledgeable folk, some of whom had travelled quite a long way including one couple from Norway! Thanks for inviting me Camilla!! A great place and many must-have plants :)