Ursula's Cambridge Garden

Professional gardener and plantswoman writing from my small urban garden in a great city

Favourite Quotes

“For the last forty years of my life I have broken my back, my finger-nails, and sometimes my heart in the practical pursuit of my favourite occupation.”

“If gardening doesn’t teach us anything else it should teach us faith. All the time we are shivering and complaining, nature is working miracles underground. I die a thousand deaths until I see my friends coming back to greet me, …safe and sound.”

“If only one were as good a gardener in practise as one is in theory, what a garden one would create!”

“Instant gardening is no more satisfying to the soul than thirty-second snatches of Mozart, condensed novels or fast food.”

“Although I have been gardening for fifty-six years…I can still feel daunted by the sight of a large empty space waiting to be transformed.”

“Few things are more pleasurable than planting. As you push the soil around the roots and stand back to admire, you see not the twig or the tiny nub of growth now almost covered by the mulch around it, but a future lived out in growth.”

“There are only two things I can make, gardens and tea.”

“There is no beginning and no end to a garden, it is a set of processes, not a product. This is what I love; this complex, interdependent evolution where you need to employ everything you have – experience, a little knowledge, craft, science, art and, wherever you can, a dash of poetry. Not to mention a lot of luck.”

“Just as memories are a resource, so the garden is a resource. It is a repository of beauty – something to turn to when tired and empty. It gives back much more than it takes.”

“Humility and the most patient perseverance, seem almost as necessary in gardening as rain and sunshine, and every failure must be used as a stepping-stone to something better.”

“Some people think that the word ‘design’ is a little too pretentious and would rather their garden ‘evolve’ over the years so that, by trial and error, its character and that of the owner are revealed in a natural progression. However you like to describe the process, it is still design…it just takes much longer to see the results.”

5 thoughts on “Favourite Quotes

  1. Hi Ursula, I’ve finally caught up with your blog! Lovely photos and interesting reading. The Botanic pictures have brought back great memories of trudging through the snow with you! Must come and see you and what you have been up to in your garden. Well done on your allotment too. Your usual immense enthusiam and passion shine through. I, as always, enjoy everybody else’s gardens!

  2. Ursula, It is a few years since we pottered around the school gardens but it is lovely to readyour blogs and see your hard work. Best wishes, Helen

    • Dear Helen thanks so much for reading and commenting very much appreciated. Glad you like the blog – and yes our school days seem ages away in some ways, and only the twinkling of an eye in others! Happy holidays my dear, Ursula

  3. Lovely gardens. They remind me a bit of Dumbarton Oaks, in Georgetown, Washington DC – the Oaks
    also has a museum on its grounds. People from Cambridge would feel right at home at Dumbarton Oaks. Come and visit.

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