Garden Shed Writing
November 23, 1990
Today is the anniversary of the death of the beloved British children’s author, Roald Dahl.
Roald was an avid gardener, and his garden shed doubled as his writing nook, where he wrote many books, including Charlie and the Chocolate factory. As sweet as this sounds to a gardener's ears, there was a practical reason behind Roald’s writing in the garden shed. It turns out, Roald chain-smoked as he wrote, and the garden shed kept the smoke out of the house. For Roald's part, he loved the idea of using the garden shed as a place to write, especially after seeing the little writing hut used by the author Dylan Thomas.
If you are a gardener with a passion for roses, you should check out the Roald Dahl Rose, which honored Roald's love of gardening. The Roald Dahl Rose is an absolutely stunning English shrub rose bred by David Austin. With its blousy habit and scrumptious nonstop peach blooms, the Roald Dahl Rose has a lovely fragrance as well - and not many thorns, so that's a bonus.
Throughout his life, Roald kept a diary, and there are many marvelous entries about his garden. Roald was often inspired by his garden, which is evident in his work:
I liked The Secret Garden, best of all. It was full of mystery.
— Roald Dahl, British children’s author, Matilda
There is just one small bright spark shining through the gloom in my January garden. The first snowdrops are in flower.
— Roald Dahl, British children’s author, My Year
And now suddenly, the whole place,
the whole garden seemed to be alive with magic…
— Roald Dahl, British children’s author, James and the Giant Peach
But Mr. Tibbs didn’t hesitate for long.
“Tell the head gardener,” he whispered,
“that I require immediately a brand new unused garden fork
and also a spade.
And for a knife, we shall use
the great sword hanging on the wall in the morning-room.
But clean the sword well first.
It was last used to cut off the head of King Charles the First
and there may still be a little dried blood on the blade.”
— Roald Dahl, British children’s author, The BFG
Mary, Mary, quite contrary
How does your garden grow?
“I live with my brat in a high-rise flat,
So how in the world would I know?”
— Roald Dahl, British children’s author