Quickfire with gardener Alan Titchmarsh | Daily Mail Online

The Glorious Garden, an album of poems written by Alan about his favourite plants and flowers, with accompanying music by Debbie Wiseman, will be released by Classic FM on Friday, classicfm.com

Guilty pleasure? A gin and tonic of an evening – not every evening, but at least half the week. I recently discovered Rock Rose gin from a tiny distillery in Scotland.

Where is home? A Georgian farmhouse with four acres in Hampshire and a New England-style clapboard house on the Isle of Wight.

Career plan B? An actor. When I was 20 and working at Kew Gardens, I sent off for the Rada prospectus but bottled out of applying.

Who would play you in a movie of your life? Rowan Atkinson.

Biggest bugbear? Litter.

As a child you wanted to be… A gardener, from the age of eight.

Earliest memory? The smell of the wallflowers in the little front garden of my grandparents’ terraced house in Ilkley, Yorkshire.

Secret to a happy relationship? Tolerance, a shared sense of humour and, more importantly, shared values.

Your best quality? I’m loyal.

And your worst? An inability to say no, which means that I end up being very busy.

Most romantic thing you’ve ever done? Taking the Royal Box at the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden for my wife Alison’s 60th birthday to watch the ballet.

Last meal on earth? Alison’s fish pie with a glass of chablis.

Dream dinner-party guests? Alan Bennett, who’s a mate, Horatio Nelson, Jane Austen, Noël Coward, P G Wodehouse and Deborah Cavendish, Duchess of Devonshire.

Advice to teenage self? You have a right to be here and don’t be afraid to be different. When other children my age were into The Beatles, I was interested in classical music.

Cat or dog? We’re without either at the moment, but we’ve had three wonderful yellow labradors and two lovely cats. What do you see when you look in the mirror? Someone who thinks he is bloody lucky.

Starstruck moment? Julia Roberts saying, ‘How nice to see you again’ and giving me a kiss when I interviewed her before the release of The Pelican Brief. She had remembered me from a previous interview.

Big break? Doing a little piece for BBC’s Nationwide in 1979 on a greenfly invasion of Margate.

Favourite tipple? A glass of rioja.

Hangover cure? Drink lots of water, then you don’t get one.

Top of your bucket list? To be in a West End musical, not as the star, but as a second or third character. A few years ago, I was the narrator for the Royal Ballet’s The Wind in the Willows, which was a wonderful thrill.

One thing that would make your life better? An extra couple of hours in the day.

Philosophy? Never forget the importance of generosity of spirit.

Last film that made you cry? The Railway Children always makes me emotional.

Where would you time-travel to? The Georgian period, if I could experience it without the poverty.

First record you bought? ‘China Tea’ by Russ Conway.

Most extravagant purchase? A Ralph Lauren Black Watch tartan cashmere coat.

Celebrity crush? It has got to be Julia Roberts.

Happiness is… Good friends and a loving family. 


Read more at DailyMail.co.uk