Archaeologists working on a site alleged to be the location of the Hanging Gardens of Babylon have uncovered evidence of the world’s very first garden centre.
The astounding discovery, in a secret location lying between the rivers Tigris and Euphrates in Iraq, now casts serious doubt over UK based Dobbies and Garden Land’s claims to be the world’s first garden retail giants.
The finds include two papyrus sheaves sewn together with cat-gut containing tamarisk and date-palm seeds which, say experts, may be evidence of the world’s first ‘Buy One Get One Free’ seed offer.
Other discoveries include a small red and green coloured statue in the guise of King Nebuchadnezzar II complete with fishing rod; an ornamental wishing-well and a greenhouse-irrigation system based on the Archimedes Screw principle.
Eminent archaeologist, Professor Terence Hinchcliffe of Cambridge University said, “The find gives us a fascinating insight into the lifestyles of the early Babylonians. Although the gardens were constructed more than 500 years before the birth of Christ there is evidence, in the form of fossilised pine cones and tinsel that one section of the garden centre was totally dedicated to the sale of Christmas decorations, probably in a bid to steal a march on its competitors.”
In another important breakthrough archaeologists are now scrutinizing a series of stone tablets discovered some distance from the main site and containing an unknown form of cuneiform writing. Samples sent to experts at the Louvre Museum in Paris have revealed that the pictograms seem to depict two human forms in a pitched battle next to a large triangle over a circle.
It is now thought that the images are some kind of warning with evidence so far pointing towards an early chariot clamping operation.