Hi, Joseph here!
Why ‘Migrant Gardener’ you may be asking?
Over the previous 10 and more years, I’ve lived in Asia – Malaysia, Philippines, Thailand, and China. I am from Scotland, UK, originally. Resided in England for some years as well.
How about my academic background?
Started off when I was 18 years of age with a City and Guilds in Horticulture (I believe this is now referred to as an NVQ).
Then, gravitated onwards to completing a National Diploma and a Higher National Diploma – both in Horticulture.
And topped that off with an honours degree in the same – horticulture.
I do really enjoy the academic side of life. Notwithstanding, I do, also, feel that colleges and universities are somewhat antiquated.
I always did well in writing up reports. But when it comes to exams and remembering stuff that is useless in terms of a future occupational focus – well, that’s most certainly not my forte in life.
It’s my opinion that there should be a far, far stronger emphasis on occupational skills – hands-on learning.
I started working in the horticultural arena when I was 17. I started out on what was then known as YTS – Youth Training Scheme. That position was with the University of Edinburgh’s ground’s department.
Not really knowing what I wanted to do, I turned to horticulture because I knew office work certainly was not for me.
After graduating college (diploma and higher diploma in horticulture in the bag) at the age of 23, I established myself as a local gardener and made my living that way.
I knew that management or lecturing was not for me, either.
Nevertheless, I did try my hand at management by joining Wyevale Garden Centre’s management training program at the ripe age of 32. I was stationed in Warwickshire, England.
Hmmm… that didn’t pan out too well – I quit after nine months.
A while later, I then set up my own landscaping/ gardening business.
This business was reasonably successful – at least I was able to pay the bills and have a beer or two, on occasion.
At the age of 40, after a messy marriage, I opted to ‘up-route’ and go abroad.
Currently, I’m in the Philippines.
More of a migrant gardener than a full-on gardening grafter, I decided to set up this website, in part to share some of the projects that I get involved with.
There are no garden centres where I reside in the Philippines; no other establishments that even sell potted plants or ‘proper’ potting soil. No fertilizers other than chicken and caribou (think large cow) poop.
The best I can do is to purchase seeds online – and even that pursuit is pretty limited.
Nevertheless, I do try to persevere as best I can, though it is slow going: Welcome to the Philippines.
Wish to get in touch? Shoot me a message via this email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Look forward to hearing from you!