Head Gardener of Horatio’s Garden Oswestry, Imogen Jackson, featured on BBC Radio Shropshire today, speaking to Adam Green all about gardening in lockdown.

If you missed Imogen’s interview, click here to catch up.
You’ll find us around 2 hours and 10 minutes into the programme.

Adam enthusiastically introduced the charity and Imogen, who began by telling listeners all about the story of Horatio’s Garden and her role in our fourth garden at the Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt Orthopaedic Hospital.

In light of lockdown, Imogen explained that she’s certainly been busy taking care of the garden, which was thoughtfully designed by Bunny Guinness and opened almost this time last year. As Imogen mentions, she normally has the support of 30 volunteers when tending to the garden, but as a result of current restrictions a few members of the team have only just been allowed to return to the garden for the first time since March.

However, Imogen shared that although the pressure to look after the garden was immense, it was truly wonderful to see both patients and NHS staff from the Midland Centre for Spinal Injuries helping to take care of the garden even more so than usual.

She told listeners all about the current pressures facing both patients and staff too, focussing particularly on the fact that those spending time in the spinal centre have now been unable to see their loved ones for over three months. Yet, despite the incredible challenges, everyone has come together in the garden and the NHS team have collaborated with Imogen to host activities and events that have successfully lifted many people’s spirits. Similarly, Imogen shared that simply being amongst nature makes a huge difference to everyone’s wellbeing and that the amazing comments she receives from patients everyday make her job more than worthwhile.

As well as answering questions about her favourite plants and places in the garden, she also encouraged everyone to make the most of their own gardens and reassured listeners that it’s never too late to start sowing seeds or planting bulbs. She wholeheartedly agreed with Adam that lockdown has encouraged people to reconnect with nature and shared her hopes that this would continue to be the case once life returns to normal.

We are so grateful to Adam and BBC Radio Shropshire for featuring us and hope you all enjoy listening to Imogen as much as we did!