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28 June 2001

Happy Birthday Decorfolia

Photo of Pat, the boss Did you know that it was in June 1976 that Bronwyn Burrell started Decorfolia? I know that some of her earliest customers are still with us now. I wonder how many companies can make a boast like that? When after 25 years of very successful business, Bronwyn Burrell asked me if I would be interested in buying the Company I thought long and hard for oh, at least ten seconds, and said yes please. You see I had already been working both for and with Bron for some 19 years and whilst originally I was her office administrator, my role gradually developed into an interesting combination of general factotum and nanny.

During those 19 years, and with Bron's encouragement, I learnt more and more about the plants and various planting systems available, along with finding out how to advise on putting the correct plants into contracts. I was obviously a good pupil because before long I was off visiting prospective customers and quoting for new work.

This long and happy apprenticeship has now led me to my current situation - and now the role of general factotum and nanny has fallen to Mark. Who knows, when I decide to play tennis on a regular basis he might take up the baton!

Unfortunately for him he might have a long wait, as I get so much pleasure from being around the plants, my long suffering husband has learnt that if I am missing on a Saturday morning I am not in Sainsburys like other wives, but watering, chatting to and generally pampering the plants in our greenhouse. Why pay to visit the Eden Project when I have my very own tropical paradise, filled with everything except the tropical paradise bugs and creepy crawlies! But heated to a very pleasant 20ÂșC and with a very comfortable humidity. A veritable comfort zone, which brings me on to Ugly Bugly our feral cat. Please take the time to read his "Staff Profile" below, he is one of the most important members of our team, as Chief rodent officer!

Thank you for taking time to read my ramblings, and I hope when and if we meet you will understand why I sound so enthusiastic.

The only photo we have of Ugly Bugly. Ugly Bugly our Foreman and Chief rodent officer, but just plain Ugly to his friends. He moved into our glass house a few years ago now and earns his keep by scaring our smaller furry friends away. A true feral tom cat with all the scars to prove it, so ageing him has been impossible and even the vet cannot tell his years! We have decided though that his laid back nature must mean he is semi-retired. This picture shows him in just one of his many sleeping spots. They seem to be just about anywhere and everywhere. Always just out of reach mind, he has made it quit clear that humans are here just to feed him and nothing else...

Read more about Ugly Bugly and Some of our other feral cats

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