Old Herbaceous – Thurs 14th – Sat 23rd March – 7:30pm
by Reginald Arkell
dramatised by Alfred Shaughnessy
Old Herbaceous is a classic British novel of the garden. an awkward orphan child with one leg a tad longer than the other, rises from inauspicious schoolboy days spent picking wildflowers and dodging angry farmers to become the legendary head gardener “Old Herbaceous,” the most esteemed flower-show judge in the county and a famed horticultural wizard capable of producing dazzling April strawberries from the greenhouse.
Sprinkled with nuggets of gardening wisdom, Old Herbaceous is a witty comic portrait of the most archetypal—and crotchety—head gardener ever to plant a row of bulbs at a British country house.
Pottering amongst the seeds and cuttings at the back of his ramshackle greenhouse in the garden of a Gloucestershire manor house is Herbert Pinnegar. Now in his twilight years, he’s full of memories and tales of a bygone era. In-between potting up and potting on, he recounts his journey from orphan boy to legendary head gardener ‘Old Herbaceous’ and tells of his friendship with the lady of the house, Mrs Charteris. Sown with seeds of gardening wisdom, this charming one man show is a love story – a humorous portrayal of a single-minded yet gentle man with a passion for plants.