Comedian and author, Julian Clary credits his father for his knowledge and love of gardening. “My father tried to introduce me to manly pursuits like car mechanics and decorating but gardening was the only one that I was interested in as a child. And Thank God I was. I know what a lot of plants are and all about deadheading and things. My triumph this year, were dahlias. I made a whole new flowerbed and planted about 100. They’ve been magnificent and I’ve been picking them from July to now. The house has been full of them, I’ll grow more next year. I love the big red pom-pom ones, not the tight little mean ones. I grow spinach, garlic, lettuce, runner beans, tomatoes, it’s all very rewarding and it’s escapism for me. I don’t normally talk about my garden, I like to keep it as a separate World. And I don’t normally get asked,” he adds.
“I like all the old fashioned cottage style plants like foxgloves, lupins and delphiniums but then I’ve also got lots of marigolds too. Jasper Conran is a good friend of mine and he is really upset by my marigolds, he says they belong on a roundabout in Reading but I’m keeping them anyway.”
The enigmatic entertainer describes himself as ‘very outdoorsy’. “I became a rustic person 3 or 4 years ago when I got my chickens and ducks. They have the run of the garden in the day but are shut in at night because of the foxes. The fox killed 3 chickens last year and 1 still lives in fear. I had a guinea pig as a child but always wanted chickens, I love watching them in the garden, I find them delightful and pleasing. They only seem to dig in certain areas, they eat the bugs and fertilize the garden. I’m very into all of my flowers and there has been no conflict yet. I have also got two dogs, Valerie who is a 11 year old whippet cross and Albert who is 18 months old and a Jack Russell and Staffy cross. They’re so good for each other; Albert keeps Valerie active and she can be quite a calming influence on him in return. I am able to relax with my animals and my garden, it’s such a contrast to my other life. I don’t talk about it on Tour or in my books, it would be incongruous. So there will be no jokes about Red Hot Pokers,” he smiles.
To find out more pop into www.julianclary.co.uk.