It all starts with seeds that germinate but how does one start a new blog? Who? What? Where? When?
The 'when' is easy - now - January 2012 - this is it - never done a blog before!
Where? - well at the moment Palm Springs, California, USA but my other home is Nottingham in the Midlands UK - hence the 'pampas2palms' - pampas grass - so unfashionably British but I do rather like them and have used them in my gardens many times - more later.
Palms - very much part of the landscape in Palm Springs - not really surprising! Look at the skyline and you see mountains, look lower and the skyline is punctuated with palm trees - fan palms, jelly palms, date palms and queen palms. Palm Springs is inland - a desert region in the Coachella Valley with very hot summers and wonderful mild, warm sunny winters.
What? - well this will mainly be a gardening blog but split between activities and plants in both the UK and in the USA - two very different climates and ranges of plants. I have a particular interest in exotic plants love bright colours and bold foliage. I guess other things will creep in too, a bit of cooking, my interest in photography and my aging passion for fitness and running. No doubt there will be the odd rant!
Who? - well that's me - Ian Cooke, semi-retired horticulturalist and author. Before retiring I used to manage the award winning grounds of the University of Nottingham. 'Gardening on a grand scale at someone else's expense.' I retired in 2008 and spend my time writing - now negotiating my tenth book, giving gardening talks and designing gardens. I also judge at the Chelsea Flower Show and other events for the RHS plus judge East Midlands in Bloom.
I'm a lucky guy, partnered for 16 years to Philip who works as a nurse at the local hospital. He lives here 12 months of the year but as I only have a B2 Visa, I have to return to the UK for the summer - hence pampas2palms!