Sunday, 20 March 2011

Garden Theft - Are People Really That Desperate?

As it was quite a nice day today, weather wise, I decided to do a spot or gardening. I have a couple of empty water-logged planters in the front garden, which I needed to drill holes into so that everything I put in it doesn’t die within a month. I also needed to clear away the pine needles from the Christmas tree I lobbed out of the window from my first floor living room in early January. Not a good look in mid March.

As I was merrily weeding away, sweeping up leaves, discarded crisp and sweet packets (living next door to one of the areas best primary schools does have its downsides) I noticed that something didn’t seem right.

It came to me a moment later; there was something missing. Some low-life thieving bastards had stolen my lovely bay tree, along with the zinc planter it came in, even though I had drilled holes into the planter and screwed it into the paving so that it couldn’t be lifted away (or so I thought).

I have to say, I am disgusted. It might be a tad dramatic but I feel violated. Not only have they stolen my plant, they have stolen pretty much the only plant I have ever managed to keep alive!

We were very pleased, the Grumpy One and I, when we planted it, along with the (long since dead) box hedges we lovingly shaped and planted in neat little rows (who actually kills a box hedge by the way?) Us gays had brought a touch of class to the otherwise drab and dreary front gardens on our street. Well not any more.

The value of the plant and the pot can’t be more than about £80. I haven’t checked the policy but I am sure the excess on my home insurance is higher than that, plus to claim I would probably have to call the police and I would feel a right muppet complaining to them that my bay tree was stolen. So I guess I will just have to put it down to experience.

Have we really now got to the stage that people are stealing plants from gardens? Well, yes it turns out. I did a quick look online and realised that garden theft is in fact big business. Items are often stolen to order and Halifax has reported that insurance claims for garden theft have gone up by 52%.

So what do I do now? I am certainly not going to plant another bay tree and I won’t be spending a small fortune on box hedge either. I may as well write 'mug' across my garden wall. No, instead I will have to plant something decidedly less trendy, something that nobody wants to steal. Any ideas?
What do you think?


dirtycowgirl said...

How about a very prickly bush ??
But one that doesn't look so, then when you hear cries of pain you can just sit there and feel very smug.
I do know what you mean about plants tho, I am the kiss of death to houseplants - I have never had one that lived more then a month.
Might write a post about my efforts with them as it goes, once again you inspire me Mr M :)

Darren Ingram said...

Darling, I don't do prickly No seriously I think you are onto something there dirtycowgirl. Either that or something poinonous!

Anonymous said...

I tried pyracantha (firethorn), cacti, "ornamental" rose bushes with wicked thorns, chicken wire, bird netting, and spurge that leaks very irritating white sap at the slightest touch. No dice. My garden is still raided at least twice per summer for its lights, plants, and planters.

Mr Musing said...

the spurge sounds interesting...might have to give that a try altough would probably end up getting the sap on myself! Raided twice per summer - I just can't believe people stoop so low!

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