This is me, Eccles

This is me, Eccles
This is me, Eccles

Tuesday, 5 August 2014

The racism of gardening

We are grateful to Fr Phil of the very liberal Catholic church of St Daryl the Apostate for permitting us to reproduce his homily little chat.

As Dr Ben Pitcher, a senior lecturer in sociology at the University of Westminster, has pointed out, gardening is a very racist activity, and it is mostly used by white people as a way of sublimating their racist desires. Pull out some ground elder, and you're doing it because you're not allowed to beat up Pakistanis.

Alan Titchmarsh

Have you seen this man? Wanted for aggressively wielding a fork.

Well, as liberal Catholics we have to watch out for racist activities such as gardening in our own lives. Remember the parable of the wheat and the tares, or darnel? They lived happily together in a liberal tolerant multi-species field until one day a brutal racist farmer (probably a UKIP member) came along and destroyed the tares, merely on account of the fact that they were not racially pure wheat plants. Well, we liberals know that this was a metaphorical story - God is not going to judge us, is He? Indeed, Christ told us this story as a warning against racism!


Food for racists - contains no darnel.

Go back to the book of Genesis. In the garden of Eden we have all the plants growing together in peace and harmony. As Christ put it, the Taraxacum officinale will lie down with the Plantago major, or, in non-traddy language as recommended by the Blessed Spirit of Vatican II, the dandelion will lie down with the lamb's foot. What do Eve and Adam do? They aggressively eat some fruit - possibly an apple - and then rip leaves off a fig tree, merely to clothe themselves. Of course since the 1960s we have realised that they put on their clothes merely to reinforce the sexist hegemony; indeed, as a result of Eve and Adam's aggressive figtree-harassment they were thrown out of the garden, and serve them right.

Adam, Eve and God

God clothes Adam and Eve in non-racist unisex garments.

One final example before Señorita Caseta de Jardín entertains us with her flamenco dancing. Some people still take literally the story of the Resurrection. In the book of John we read of Mary Magdalene finding the empty tomb, and coming across Christ, whom she mistakes for a gardener. A gardener! A professional racist who might at any moment rip out a nettle from the place where it was living peacefully with its neighbours! A man who would spread malicious gossip about the Urtica dioica, saying that it carried poison, and would sting people! No wonder she felt so silly when Christ turned to her and she realised who it was!

Fr Phil's sermon appears by kind permission of the Tablet.


  1. Darling eccles - this is one for Gardeners' Question time: "Are you now or have you ever been a member of the RHS?" That'll sort them xx Jess

  2. Dear Sir,

    I find much to commend in your excellent articile on the perils of racist gardening and I would point out that I am a very portant gardener myself, being president of the Tunbridge Wells ACTA Allotment Society and winner of the post-Vatican II Giant Tasteless Marrow Award - five years running!

    Which brings me neatly to my clever point: Jesus told the parable of the sower but it didn't go down very well with the disciples, who challenged him quite rightly, saying, "Why do you speak to the people in parables?"

    That's exactly why ACTA was set up: to hold these know-it-alls to account.

    Yours extremely pleased with this gardening point,
    Ferdinand Mass-Trousers

  3. My dear Mass Trousers

    I was delighted to tare into your pithy monograph "Harvesting the Fruits of the Forest of Vatican 2" recently, on the blogsites of the Church Reform group "We are Old", and "Stand up from your recliner chair with the help of your Zimmer for Vatican 2".

    I note that you eschewed all references to blackberries or hoes, and your plea to the bishops to discourage the demonisation of japanese knotweed brought teas to my eyes.

    I must invite you round for a toadstool risotto some time.