Gardening quotes

Here are some popular gardening quotes along with their sources:

“Show me your garden, and I shall tell you who you are.” – Alfred Austin

“To plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow.” – Audrey Hepburn

To plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow.
Gardening adds years to your life

Quotes from Gertrude Jekyll

Gertrude Jekyll, a key figure in garden design, is known for her insightful and poetic observations on gardening. Here are some memorable quotes from her:

“For the love of gardening is a seed that once sown never dies but always grows and grows to an enduring and ever-increasing source of happiness.”

“And a garden is a grand teacher. It teaches patience and careful watchfulness; it teaches industry and thrift; above all, it teaches entire trust.”

“Let no one be discouraged by the thought of how much there is to learn.”

“Gardening is a kind of disease. It infects you, you cannot escape it. When you go visiting, your eyes rove about the garden; you interrupt the serious cocktail drinking because of an irresistible impulse to pull a weed.”

“The best garden is the garden which is always green.”

“There is always in February some one day, at least, when one smells the yet distant, but surely coming, summer.”

“But a day comes, or, perhaps, a warmer night, when the wind, now breathing gently from the south-west, puts new life into all growing things.”

“There is no spot of ground, however arid, bare or ugly, that cannot be tamed into such a state as may give an impression of beauty and delight.”

“But the lesson I have thoroughly learnt and wish to pass on to others is to know the enduring happiness that the love of a garden gives.”

“I am strongly for treating garden and wooded ground in a pictorial way mainly with large effects and in the second place with lesser beautiful incidents.”

“A garden so treated gives the delightful feeling of repose and refreshment and purest enjoyment of beauty.”

“I try for beauty and harmony everywhere and especially for harmony of colour.”

“Many people who love flowers and wish to do some practical gar-
dening are at their wit’s end to know what to do and how to begin. Like a
person who is on skates for the first time, they feel that, what with the
bright steel runners, and the slippery surface, and the sense of helpless-
ness, there are more ways of tumbling about than of progressing safely in
any one direction. And in gardening the beginner must feel this kind of
perplexity and helplessness, and indeed there is a great deal to learn, only
it is pleasant instead of perilous, and the many tumbles by the way only
teach and do not hurt.”

“The grand way to learn, in gardening as in all things else, is to wish to
learn, and to be determined to find out—not to think that any one person
can wave a wand and give the power and knowledge. And there will be
plenty of mistakes, and there must be, just as children must pass through
the usual childish complaints.”

“Nothing is a better lesson in the knowledge of plants than to sit down in front of them, and handle them and look them over just as carefully as possible; and in no way can such study be more pleasantly or conveniently carried on than by taking a light seat to the rock-wall and giving plenty of time to each kind of little plant, examining it closely and asking oneself, and it, why this and why that.”

“Weeding is a delightful occupation, especially after summer rain, when the roots come up clear and clean. One gets to know how many and various are the ways of weeds—as many almost as the moods of human creatures.”

“There is nothing much more difficult to do in outdoor gardening than to plant a mixed border well, and to keep it in beauty throughout the summer.”

“I always think it desirable to group together flowers that bloom at the same time. It is impossible, and even undesirable, to have a garden in blossom all over, and groups of flower-beauty are all the more enjoyable for being more or less isolated by stretches of intervening greenery.”

“I hold that nothing unsightly should be seen in the garden.”

“The size of a garden has very little to do with its merit. It is merely an accident relating to the circumstances of the owner. It is the size of his heart and brain and goodwill that will make his garden either delightful or dull, as the case may be, and either leave it at the usual monotonous dead-level, or raise it, in whatever degree may be, towards that of a work of fine art.”

“I do not envy the owners of very large gardens. The garden should fit
its master or his tastes just as his clothes do; it should be neither too large
nor too small, but just comfortable.”

“Some of the most delightful of all gardens are the little strips in front of roadside cottages. They have a simple and tender charm that one may look for in vain in gardens of greater pretension.”

“There is scarcely any Rose that we can wish to have in our gardens that is not also delightful in the cut state.”

Gertrude jekyll on february
But a day comes, or, perhaps, a warmer night, when the wind, now breathing gently from the south-west, puts new life into all growing things.

Quotes from Margaret Roach

Here are some quotes from Margaret Roach, many of which come from her lovely book, A Way to Garden.

“A garden without a gardener is a jungle waiting to happen. But a gardener without a plot to till is likewise a very sorry sight.” – Margaret Roach

“The medium is alive, and always changing, and no, you are never really in charge for a second, no matter how straight your rows nor sturdy your staking. Something larger is always at work, something no mere hand of a gardener can control.” – Margaret Roach

“How ugly my combination was. How proud it made me to see them grow.” – Margaret Roach

“We have grown up together, the garden and I, and now we approach growing old together too, with bits falling off here and there on both of us, and others not working quite so smoothly.”

“I always say the birds taught me to garden.”

“The first week garden centers reopen here can be perilous, particularly if the winter has been ugly.”

Quotes from Alan Titchmarsh

Here are some of my favorite lines from “Tales from Titchmarsh” and other publications:

“This new year will be better than the last one, the weather will be kinder, you’ll master the knack of growing a plant that has always been tricky before, and your garden will look better than ever.” -Alan Titchmarsh

“Titchmarsh’s Law says that however big your greenhouse you will always have too many plants to fit into it.” -Alan Titchmarsh

“Gardeners, you see, are as territorial as any robin.” -Alan Titchmarsh

“Most gardeners could not get through the day without the cup that cheers. Or preferably the mug. Or several mugs. Gardeners and tea go together like wheelbarrows and manure, or spades and wellies.” -Alan Titchmarsh

“Time was when wellies were black and feet were damp. Then along came jolly green Hunter boots with buckles. The artisans sneered at them as something only suitable for those ladies in Fulham who take their children to school in a four-wheel drive vehicle. Not me. This is the one extravagance I will not be without.” -Alan Titchmarsh

“Sly folk the Victorians. They gave each other bunches of flowers that contained cryptic messages. Not written on bits of paper and stuffed in with the bunch – but messaged that were signified by the blooms themselves. The language of flowers, they called it.” -Alan Titchmarsh

“White ‘Longiflorum’ lilies signify good taste, while ‘Stargazer’ lilies signify shopping at an unadventurous florist.” -Alan Titchmarsh

“At the start of every year I walk round the garden to take stock. It’s a sort of cleansing operation – the horticultural equivalent of the US President’s State of the Union address. I’ll look at what’s doing well and what’s not, and decide on changes that need to be made.” -Alan Titchmarsh

“Ah, yes, winter is a time to daydream. Gardeners like to look forward, but I like to look back, too, and savor the memories of warm summer days now long gone.” -Alan Titchmarsh

Quotes from Monty Don

Here are some quotes and excerpts from Monty Don’s publications:

“I love plants for their setting as much as for themselves. I can love a garden made up of very ordinary plants just as easily as one that contains a treasure trove of rare or interesting specimens.” -Monty Don

“Whereas honeybees are happiest with a monoculture, gorging themselves on one preferred plant until the supply is exhausted, bumblebees need different types of vegetation for nesting, foraging, mating and hibernating. Even if al four are available in the same small area, the bees will use them at different times.” -Monty Don

“Dandelions thrive on being chopped back, whether by nibbling sheep or a lawnmower. If one of the definitions of a weed is a plant that has adapted to difficult circumstances better and quicker than most other, then the dandelion’s ability to recover and thrive despite regular decapitation makes it a super-weed. The shorter the grass is cut, the more light reaches the dandelion leaves and the stronger it will grow. It will, of course, not produce seed if cut regularly but the deep taproot, the wide rosette of leaves and a lifespan of up to ten years mean that it can bide its time and then, when conditions are right, quickly flower and only take about ten days between the flower forming and setting ripe seed.”

More gardening quotes

“Gardening adds years to your life and life to your years.” – Unknown

Mary Jane Duford
Mary Jane Duford

Mary Jane Duford is a quintessential Canadian gardener. An engineer by trade, she tends to an ever-expanding collection of plants. In her world, laughter blooms as freely as her flowers, and every plant is raised with a dash of Canadian grit.

Mary Jane is a certified Master Gardener and also holds a Permaculture Design Certificate. She's also a proud mom of three, teaching her little sprouts the crucial difference between a garden friend and foe.

When she's not playing in the dirt, Mary Jane revels in her love for Taylor Swift, Gilmore Girls, ice hockey, and the surprisingly soothing sounds of bluegrass covers of classic hip-hop songs. She invites you to join her garden party, a place where you can share in the joy of growing and where every day is a new opportunity to find the perfect spot for yet another plant.

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