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Blind gardener from Crook able to draw many an admiring glance
6:00am Thursday 5th September 2013 in News
THE floral display outside Joe Robinson's terraced house draws admirers from miles around - but the keen gardener nevers see his own handiwork as he's totally blind.
The 74-year-old can't appreciate the results of his handiwork but he knows it must be good as hundreds of complete strangers tell him so!
The retired factory worker lost his sight 20 years ago but his greenfingers retained their touch - and this summer his flower-power has stunned everyone who passes his garden in Crook, County Durham.
He said: "I've always been a keen gardener but I had an eye condition which meant a gradual loss of sight. When I became totally blind it never occured to me to stop - although I can't see what I'm doing, I work by sense of touch and smell.
"It seems to work as people are constantly stopping to look at the garden and say how wonderful it looks.
"I've got 20 hanging baskets this year, my grandson Jamie, who's 20, hooks them up for me and helps me keep everything tidy.
"My wife Heather is allergic to plants so she can't help - it's up to me to keep the garden looking good and it's my hobby and I love it."
Joe has won several trophies at his local flower show in recent years.
Heather, 68, said: "It's a real oasis of colour, we get cars stopping outside and people getting out and asking for cuttings! We don't mind, we've got more than we need so we just say: "Help yourselves".
"I used to enjoy helping Joe but my hands come out in blisters, I've been told I've got some sort of allergy, so I have to leave him to it."
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