How do they achieve those immaculate effects? A little low cunning helps. This will probably come as no surprise to you all, but I love going to flower shows. I love checking out the new plant varieties, I love learning from the growers, I even love the scent of bark chippings on the pathways. But perhaps what I love the most is the eavesdropping: learning what visitors really think about the exhibits. There is one frequent comment, however, that always makes me feel slightly uneasy: “Why doesn’t my garden look like this?” This is almost always said, not with a note of humour, but of disappointment. If you have ever found yourself thinking this, let me fill you in to what happens behind the scenes.