Time capsule garden honours those we have lost during pandemic
- Credit: VICKY PLATT
A special needs advisor from Ipswich has been using lockdown to practice a new skill and brighten up her garden.
Vicky Platt, 47, said: “As a Suffolk advisory teacher for special needs, my job is hectic and involves lots of travel around the county, and as lockdown hit, I found remote support and lots of time at a computer quite difficult. So I turned to gardening as a way of keeping myself fit and my mind distracted.”
But instead of the standard weeding and pruning, Vicky focused on a more abstract style of gardening.
She explained: “Last summer my mother-in-law taught me how to make mosaic tiles, and this was the perfect opportunity to put this skill into action. So each day, after the prime minister’s announcements, I went down to the cellar and made a tile.
“I have gradually cleared an area of the garden that used to have a trampoline, and was covered in bark-chip, and I decided to make a ‘time capsule’ garden to remember those who we have lost, and those who have given so much during the pandemic.
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“Each tile has a theme: for example, for VE day I used aeroplanes in blue cement. The heart is for the NHS, there is darkness into light and toys for all the children quarantined at home. I even shrunk crisp packets and set them in cement for all the food we seem to be eating.”
Keen to bring some traditional colour to the garden, Vicky has been planting red flowering plants.
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“I have chosen red planting for the NHS heart,” she said. “My mum raised money for the NSPCC with a plant sale so I popped over once lockdown allowed and bought up lots of little plants. It felt good to support an organisation that is doing so much to help vulnerable children and domestic violence which has increased in the lockdown.
She has Pieris, red robin, pussy willow, ornamental grasses, phormium, and red elderflower, sat alongside laurel, choisya and euphorbia to lighten the shady garden.
“In amongst the planting I have sown poppy seeds which will come up next year, in remembrance of this time and I chose Victoria cross which is raising money for the Chelsea pensioners,” she added.
Vicky concluded: “The garden has brought me a huge amount of peace and enjoyment in it’s making and my family, friends and colleagues have often been entertained by what I have managed to set in concrete.”
The budding garden has entered our Best Lockdown Garden competition, which aims to find the top three lockdown gardens in Suffolk and north Essex, with winners receiving hundreds of pounds of gardening vouchers.
The prizes in the competition are:
• £200 to spend with enjoygardeningmore.co.uk (garden over 150 square metres)
• £100 to spend with enjoygardeningmore.co.uk (garden over 150 square metres)
• £50 to spend with enjoygardeningmore.co.uk (garden under 150 square metres)
How to enter
To enter, send your photographs via email along with your name, postcode, daytime telephone number and size of garden.
If you wish to tell us more about your garden, please include details in your email.
Closing date for submission of pictures is June 15, 2020. The gardens will appear in the newspaper from June 1 to 20. Enjoy Gardening More Head Gardener Peter McDermott will judge all published pictures and the winners will be announced in the week commencing July 6, 2020.
Normal Archant competition rules apply. Archant Community Media Ltd will solely use the data you provide for the purpose of running the competition, including contacting winners and the distribution of any prize.