Do you feel like your English language journey is as mundane as a barren, sun-scorched garden? Well, you're not alone.
Many have been on the same bumpy path, with the dream of speaking English fluently, only to be stumped by the traditional, dull language-learning methods. But what if I told you there's a way to cultivate your English language skills, just like tending a thriving, vibrant English garden? And all this while you uncover the enchanting world of UK gardening trends? Join us with an exciting #britishenglish language lessons on the lush tapestry of UK gardening. See your vocabulary and fluency bloom! 🌷
- 🎧🌳 Embark on a unique language adventure in the heart of UK gardening
- 🎙️🌼 Listen to Hilary's engaging stories, brought to life in pure British English
- 💬🌸 Improve your spoken English in a relaxed, natural setting
Language is the road map of a culture. It tells you where its people come from and where they are going.
⭐ Rita Mae Brown
Don't let language be a thorny issue. Let's prune those language barriers together. Get ready to leaf through British English like never before! Boost your English Fluency now! Unearth those UK Gardening Secrets!
Using this approach to learning to speak English, you're not just passively absorbing language - you're actively engaged in the discussion, contextualizing your learning journey. This is a crucial component of achieving fluency.
You'll find yourself naturally internalizing idiomatic phrases, subtle language nuances, and the rhythm of spoken English - all of these invaluable for becoming a fluent speaker. And the best part? You're learning all this while exploring an intriguing cultural narrative. It's a win-win!
The English language is like London: proudly barbaric yet deeply civilised, too, common yet royal, vulgar yet processional, sacred yet profane.
⭐ Stephen Fry
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Welcome! I'm Hilary, your guide on this engaging English language journey, exploring the evolving trends of UK gardening while improving your grasp of spoken English in a relaxed, conversational setting.
Our English lessons go beyond the traditional confines of language learning. Today, you'll be immersing yourself in an organic, interactive environment. By following the journey of an English gardener, you’ll soak in the language's natural rhythm, tonality, and context. Weaving environmental trends, changing gardening practices, and societal shifts into your English learning journey will not only enrich your vocabulary but also deepen your understanding of English context and its nuances.
You can never understand one language until you understand at least two.
⭐ Geoffrey Willans
- Discover new English vocabulary through UK gardening trends!
- Learn English through a friendly, relaxed chat on gardening!
- Improve pronunciation with Adept English Consonant Pronunciation Course.
- Learn the language of climate change, ecology and environment.
- Unpack new phrases: 'thrive', 'therapeutic', 'contrived', 'self-seeds'.
- Explore the use of 'allotments' in English gardening terms.
- Understand English words like 'annual', 'perennial', 'geraniums', 'shrubs'.
- Follow English conversations on 'natural' garden styles.
- Expand vocabulary on water conservation and compost creation.
- Delve into English terms for wildlife: 'hedgehogs', 'badgers', 'foxes'.
- Our approach blends engaging topics like UK gardening trends into the lessons, ensuring relevancy and interest.
- We encourage mistakes as part of the learning process, providing constructive feedback in a supportive environment.
- The lessons are embedded with British cultural nuances, enriching your language learning experience.
I am irritated by my own writing. I am like a violinist whose ear is true, but whose fingers refuse to reproduce precisely the sound he hears within.
⭐ Gustave Flaubert
Sick of mundane English drills? How about turning a new leaf? Our lessons ensure that you're actively engaged in the discussion, contextualizing your learning journey. This is crucial in achieving fluency. You'll find yourself naturally internalizing idiomatic phrases, subtle language nuances, and the rhythm of spoken English - all of these invaluable for becoming a fluent speaker.
- Unique blend of UK gardening and English language lessons 🌱📚
- Immersive British English experience through storytelling 🎧🇬🇧
- Relaxed and natural language learning environment 💬🌻
- Overcome language barriers and gain fluency 🌳🚀
Don't let your English language journey be mundane. Transform your English skills, one conversation at a time with us. Embark on this engaging journey - Listen now and don't forget to Subscribe to our podcast today!
As we explore UK gardening trends, you're not just walking in the garden, but also nurturing your English language seeds. Under the patient guidance of Hilary, you'll see your English skills bloom, just like the mesmerising flowers in a British garden.
- How does this podcast help me learn British English fluently? Through listening to our English language podcast, you'll get to hear the nuances of spoken British English in a relaxed and engaging setting. As you explore UK gardening trends with Hilary, you'll pick up colloquial phrases and vocabulary, helping you become more fluent.
- Is this podcast suitable for beginners in English? Absolutely! The podcast presents English in a conversational setting, perfect for learners of all levels. The topic is engaging and simple to follow, offering beginners a comfortable entry point into learning British English.
- How often are new episodes released? Our commitment is to continuous learning, so we release new episodes regularly. Keep up with the podcast to consistently improve your grasp of spoken English.
- Does the podcast only cover UK gardening topics? While the mentioned episode focuses on UK gardening trends, the podcast explores a variety of topics. The goal is to provide you with a wide range of conversational contexts to boost your English language skills.
- Can I practice speaking English along with the podcast? Certainly! We encourage listeners to repeat phrases and engage with the material. This active practice enhances your pronunciation skills and helps you speak English more naturally.
- Allotments: Small pieces of land rented by individuals for growing fruits, vegetables, or flowers.
- Perennial: Plants that survive for several years, growing back each season.
- Geraniums: A type of flowering plant often seen in gardens.
- Contrived: Something carefully planned or created, not natural or spontaneous.
- Therapeutic: Having a healing or beneficial effect on the health.
- Compost: Decayed organic material used as plant fertilizer.
- Hedgehogs: Small spiny mammals often found in gardens in the UK.
- Salvias: A type of plant from the mint family, often used in gardens for its colourful flowers.
- Penstemons: A type of perennial plant with bell-shaped flowers.
- Badgers: A type of burrowing mammal with a black-and-white striped face.
Hi there. Join me today for a relaxed, friendly chat, and let's explore the joyful world of gardening together! This is great practice for you understanding spoken English - with a relaxed subject and more of a conversation, really! Let’s look at evolving UK gardening trends, look at how changing weather patterns are changing gardens, and creating eco-friendly spaces that encourage wildlife. Have you ever thought that perhaps those 'old-fashioned' annual flower beds and well-trimmed lawns aren't the future of gardening? Perhaps chaotic, natural growth and sustainability is taking centre stage in your garden too, shifting the traditional image of the garden, especially the English garden. I thought I’d give you an update today - on my garden personally, but also on the trends, the things that are happening in gardens in the UK - and how our priorities are changing.
Hello, I’m Hilary, and you’re listening to Adept English. We will help you to speak English fluently. All you have to do is listen. So start listening now and find out how it works.
The UK is famed for its gardens - and TV programmes like our own BBC Gardener’s World are watched all across the world. We know this, because many of the gardens featured in the ‘viewer’s gardens videos’ come from people in different countries! And you know I mentioned in my ‘news’ podcast last week - 651, that is - that it’s been really dry and little rain in the UK this summer and for the past couple of years? Well, we have had some rain now since that podcast and it’s sunny again.
Before I continue, just a reminder that if pronunciation is your difficulty - or you would like to make big improvements to your pronunciation of spoken English - then obviously I recommend lots of podcast listening, but also we do have our Adept English Consonant Pronunciation Course - which covers absolutely everything about Consonant Pronunciation. It’s on our Courses page at adeptenglish.com - go and have a look!
So I came to gardening young - I’ve gardened since I was 21 years old. But back then, it was seen as something that only ‘old people’ did - not just that ‘old people had more time for it’, but really that ‘only old people would want to do gardening’. But have you noticed how gardening is experiencing a surprising revival amongst young people? Maybe you’re one of them? What was once considered an activity for the older generation, for people who’re retired perhaps is now being embraced by the young as a form of self-expression and a way to connect with nature. Even people who don’t have gardens are transforming their balconies into thriving green spaces." ‘To thrive’, THRIVE - that means ‘to grow really, really well’
I think that there are a variety of reasons for this - interest in the climate, interest in growing your own food, being free of pesticides and insecticides, interest in ecology and the environment. I think that gardening and growing things has a therapeutic value. ‘Therapeutic’, THERAPEUTIC means it’s ‘like a therapy’, it has a positive effect, it makes you feel better! And that’s both mentally and physically. I also think that the interest in gardening amongst young people has grown, because many young people live in flats and apartments, possibly without outside space. And there’s a recognition that living a life where you move between your flat, the bus or train and an air-conditioned work place is very disconnected with nature. So there’s a want to be in nature, in green spaces - and perhaps have a hand in what grows there.
And gardening and having an interest in gardening, isn’t only for homeowners in the UK, who have their own gardens. People in flats and apartments do their gardening in a small space, perhaps on a terrace, or their balcony. Having that small space is part of the challenge - and it’s really surprising to see what people can grow on a balcony. Certainly tomatoes in the summer and fresh herbs of all kinds are possible in the space that many people have. Another thing in the UK that’s very popular - we have something called ‘allotments’. That’s ALLOTMENT - and this is an area of land, which is fenced off - and divided into a number of ‘plots’ or sections. Members of the public can rent that piece of land to grow fruit, vegetables, flowers, herbs - whatever they like on there. You can even put a garden shed or a greenhouse up on most allotments - and as long as you pay your rent, you can keep them year after year. So if you don’t have a garden, you can still be a gardener - just on your allotment. In some ways, allotments are often better than the average garden that comes with a house in the UK. UK gardens can be quite small and often have trees around them - not much good for growing vegetables, which need full sun. Most allotment plots are in full sun - so this gives people the type of growing space that they need.
Things that I’m changing in my garden? Well, in the ground, I’m planting fewer annuals. An ‘annual’, ANNUAL? That’s a plant that only lasts one season, one year. I used to plant these so that I had lots of flowers. But what I’m doing increasingly is paying attention to what plants do well in my garden and survive the winter and come up year after year, without me needing to do anything. I’ve got a lot of ‘shrubs’, SHRUBS, which means ‘bushes’, with different coloured leaves - grey, lime green or red. They look nice and need little maintenance or watering. And I also have certain plants that do well flowering. My roses are good for example - very little, even dry weather seems able to kill them and they survive the winter well. The same for my ‘perennial geraniums’ - GERANIUM. That is the name we use also for the flowers that you see in pots in the Mediterranean, in southern France and other places. I have those too - their proper name is ‘pelargoniums’. What I mean here by ‘geraniums’ is the ones that stay outside through the winter cold - come up every year. And some of them flower for at least 5 months of the year. These plants are ‘good value’ and they don’t die in the winter like many things did last year.
So as much as it’s a hot, dry summer now, it seems that it was a cold and wet winter in the UK - and I lost lots of plants. I’ve decided not to replace them - or at least not replace what plants died with the same type again. Lots of my flowering sages or ‘salvias’ died and my penstemons. If they made it, they’re allowed to survive and I’ve left them to grow. But I’m not replacing those that died. I’ll instead replace them gradually with things that I know make it through the winter. And things which last for many years and still flower a lot.
A photo of a lovely British English cottage garden. Immerse yourself in authentic British conversations. Click follow, subscribe, and start your English adventure today!
I think that another trend, which you can see on programmes like Gardener’s World and at the Chelsea Flower Show and Hampton Court Flower Show - gardens are starting to look much more ‘natural’ in appearance. Long gone are the neat, clipped edges of lawns and beds full of roses, sprayed for greenfly - and also gone are those bedding schemes - where annual plants of different colours are arranged in patterns, then dug out again at the end of the season. That’s now seen as wasteful. Instead plants which ‘don’t have an end date’ - or perennial plants as we call them, PERENNIAL - they’re much more popular. ‘Perennial’ is an adjective and it can be used for plants, but it can also be used for something which ‘stays around forever’. Gardeners, by design or by accident. are favouring a much less ‘designed’ or ‘contrived’ style. If something’s ‘contrived’, CONTRIVED, it means a lot of thought has gone into it, a lot of planning. Instead, gardeners are letting the plants grow more as they wish to, letting the plants ‘do their own thing’ and seed themselves as much as they wish. If a plant ‘self-seeds’ - that’s SEED - it means it’s behaving in a natural way. It drops its seeds and it makes more plants. Many of us now are ‘light touch’ gardeners - we just lend the garden ‘a helping hand’, rather than trying to control everything in it!
Are you also trying to use less water in your garden? It’s good to collect as much as you can, if you’ve the space, in water butts - that’s BUTT. And means a big container for holding water - 100s of litres perhaps. I’ve got a system where if it rains on the roof of my house, the water is collected in pipes and feeds into two water big butts. Sometimes there’s so little rain that they run out and I have to use - yes, the dreaded hosepipe. But when there’s a rain storm, like there’s been the last couple of nights - the water butts are all topped up again and they will water the pots and the garden for a couple more weeks.
Another thing that’s changed while I’ve been gardening. When I started, you were encouraged to ‘dig the soil’, that’s DIG. And even ‘double dig’ the soil. ‘To dig’ means that you get a spade, SPADE and you do the really hard work of breaking up the soil, SOIL and turning it over. But it’s been recognised gradually that this ‘breaking up’ of the soil is not a good thing - it disturbs lots of microorganisms, which benefit the soil and the garden. And it destroys creatures, little animals that you want in your garden - like earthworms. Instead these days we focus on doing things like ‘creating compost’ - that’s COMPOST. ‘Compost’ is really like ‘new soil’ - say you collect leaves and maybe your grass cuttings from your lawn and all that fruit and vegetable waste from your kitchen, like apple cores and potato peelings. Pile it together in a compost heap - that’s HEAP. And if you leave it long enough, the worms, earthworms, WORMS - they make it into new soil. Rather than double digging, it’s much better to put compost on the surface of your garden - that’s what’s called ‘top dressing’.
So our gardens in the UK are becoming more sustainable, more organic - gone for most people are artificial chemicals like pesticides and fertilizers. And our gardens are also much more friendly to wildlife. I’m not quite yet at the point where I encourage butterflies - as I don’t want caterpillars eating my leaves! I’ve got enough slugs and snails to do that.
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A ‘snail’, SNAIL - they have a shell, and if you visit France as I do sometimes, you eat them with garlic butter. That’s a snail. But more often I meet them in my garden when they’re eating things I don’t want them to eat! We do encourage birds into our garden though - and there’s always food for them. And we see quite a lot of different types. And we also have drinking bowls for hedgehogs - that’s HEDGEHOGS. And badgers and foxes are welcome too - as long as they don’t fight with our cats! And by the way - our cats don’t often catch animals or birds - they do a lot of looking, but they’re rarely successful, which is a good thing.
So there’s a run-through of my thoughts on gardening in the UK and the gradual changes that I’m making and that many other people are making too. Also a bit on the ‘value of gardens’.
I hope this is nice, relaxed summer listening for you - and if you want to tell us about your garden or your balcony gardening, then please get in touch! !
Enough for now. Have a lovely day. Speak to you again soon. Goodbye.
Thank you so much for listening. Please help me tell others about this podcast by reviewing or rating it. And, please share it on social media. You can find more listening lessons and a free English course at adeptenglish.com
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