The Art of Gardening

Working in a large garden a few years ago something suddenly struck me. Skilled gardening is at its best something like judo.

In Japanese judo translates as ‘gentleness art’ and is based on the traditional Japanese system of unarmed self-defence perfected by the samurai and uses minimum force to overcome the power of an opponent.

The key is to know what your opponent is likely to do and what energy they bring. I’ve done a little judo in my time- just enough to know I’m more suited to gardening, but the principles seem similar.

Experienced gardeners understand the nature of their plants, soils and microclimates and use a little energy to steer the massive power of nature to create a landscape. How often do you see two men and a chainsaw doing a job that a simple pair of secateurs would have done years before?

As a first lesson in garden judo, the following two things should be learned.

Firstly let nature grow a good thing in a good place. Choose plants that suit the task and place them well.

Secondly get out in the garden today and don’t delay. Remember nature’s big trump card is time. Simple maintenance done early allows the power of nature to get busy working for you and that’s the sort of power you want on your side!



Get out in the garden today and don’t delay