Friday, 16 April 2010

Garden furniture (2): The garden table

I am often asked about my garden furniture; in fact you could describe it as a bit of a local tourist attraction. I often see people stop outside my front gate and stare at the goings-on in my garden (though it's usually that next door neighbour of mine up to his old games again).

But I digress ... due to the public demand that I reveal the secrets of my garden table, here it is! As you can see, the tabular bit of it is a very large cheese savoury biscuit. Which someone left on the lawn. For a while we thought it might be a millstone, as they look something like that, and then we thought a tractor might have lost a wheel in an OK Corral-style shootout (you get a lot of those round here) and then we realised its true nature. By the time we'd realised, a quite sizeable sapling had grown through the middle and - hey presto! - the garden table was born! In the summer, the leaf growth provides a suitable canopy for anyone not wishing to get a sunburnt botty.

Guests are invited to take a little nibble of its abundance, but for some reason none of them have done so yet. Still, all the more for us, eh? The more perspicacious among you will wonder how I manage to drag a middling-mature tree out of a potting shed; in fact, the potting shed is built in situ around the table and provides a nice little folly in an otherwise dreary winter scene.

By the way, I think I'm really beginning to get the hang of these talent-free cartoons, but I had to work at it.


  1. How big is this garden of yours, Cathy? I'm thinking rolling lawns and little shrubberies dotted around the place. I wouldn't wonder if there is a colony of fairies at the bottom of it too! Can you paint us a picture?

  2. Be still my foolish heart! What a simply stunning bit of kit, Cathy. This has to be the next big seller at B&Q - I hope you've applied for a patent. I can see flatpack ArborJacobs tables flooding the nation's gardens. Well, maybe not actually flat pack, due to the tree, but if you can get around that one, I think you have a real commercial giant on your hands. I'd certainly buy a couple, especially if you could incorporate little Ritz Cracker stools into the design. Fabooluss!

  3. Steve - you're quite right of course - I really must get it patented straight away, in case those cyberstalkers Leonard was talking about get their grubby little mitts on my brilliant idea!

    Do you think I should try to market them with a fully grown tree? Or just a tiny little sapling, or maybe a conker or acorn in the flatpack box, plus a watering can in the deluxe version?

    As a member of the target market, don't forget - your opinion counts!

  4. Hmmm - it's a dilemma and no mistake, Cathy. Good suggestions, all, but each with their drawbacks, either in terms of the 'flatpack' limitations, or time restrictions.

    As an enthusiast of garden furniture and savoury biscuits in particular, I personally would be agreeable to a compromise over the arboreal element, which is of lesser importance to me. And therefore would suggest that as an acceptable design specification, a blow-up tree, constructed of suitably robust rubber, and not PVC, and with strategically placed anchor points, would indeed be the short term answer.

    For those with more patience, conkers without a doubt!

  5. Actually, I can spot another way of making this scheme work, but it may be restricted to the Malaysian market ... see what you think:

    I think you're absolutely right about the construction of the tree needing to be rubber, rather than PVC. Conkers, too, have their drawbacks in that the person doing the planting may well be dead before the full advantages of their shade may be experienced. But how about this - replace the slow-growing, broad-leafed arboreal element with a much faster-growing ... rubber plant! I've also noticed that these may be purchased at selected branches of B & Q.

    Cunning, eh?

  6. I'm not sure, Cathy - how fast do rubber plants grow? Mind you, in the time I normally take to assemble yer typical flatpack, a mighty oak could from a tiny acorn grow (that's me being all poetic and sensitive, that is).

    But I must take issue with you on one crucial point, Cathy. It's B&Q, and certainly not B & Q. You can never be too careful about these things in today's litigious society. Probably safer to do the deal with Homebase.

  7. Good thinking, Steve. I think they also sell rubber plants at Homebase. Rubber plants grow very fast in Malaysia. I've seen them at it.