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John Walker

Surely anyone buying this kind of tat is truly away with the fairies - the ones that inhabit myopic consumerland where everyone dreams of endless and pointless consumption on a delicate orb made of finite resources.

There seems no limit to the kinds of useless stuff being flogged to perhaps the one group of folk who have real potential to hit the brake of consumption and help slow its symptoms, one of which is climate change.

They're called gardeners.

Helen Gazeley

Not going to be on your wishlist for Christmas, huh, John?

The door is certainly a matter of taste. You obviously regard this in the same light as I see the Meerkats*, which in my opinion are so extraordinarily hideous and unnecessary as to be awe-inspiring.

But you open a wider question about consumption. Taken to an extreme, we would buy nothing but basic food, clothing and fuel. But mankind has always had the desire to create and ornament. We’ve also been trading for millennia. An unnecessary ornament has given someone (OK, possibly someone in a Chinese factory) work and fed his family. Without ornament in the garden we wouldn’t have garden sculpture, fountains, waterfalls, even many flowers – all of which take resources but brighten our world and give great pleasure. If this had been chiselled by a stonemason ten minutes from your door, would you feel differently? Where would you draw the line?

As for the fairy door, I’m just going to have to admit to being short-sighted and away with the fairies. Given the gardening principles of concealment, surprise, delight, I can still see this tucked into a corner of the rockery, or the bole of a tree, half hidden by aubretia, and giving great pleasure to a child or anyone who, like me, still finds enchantment in Moley, Ratty and Badger.

*http://www.theoriginalgift.co.uk/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/Product1_21051_-1_60289_11056

Helen Gazeley

See more on this at http://helengazeley.typepad.co.uk/gardenwriter/2009/10/gardening-too-much-of-a-consuming-passion.html

Georgina Gray

I guess we all have our own definitions of pointless consumption, mine for instance might include beer (though it doesn't!)Those of us that like to look out of our windows and dream a little might well like to catch a glimpse of one of these in amongst the ivy.

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