Alan Titchmarsh is an icon when it comes to the world of gardening and fans were delighted when he announced in late September that his TV show, Love Your Weekend, would be returning to their screens on 1 October.
While fans have been lapping up the weekly instalments of the Sunday show, Alan revealed in a new interview that they could have had the chance to see him far more often, as he's been approached six times to appear on Strictly Come Dancing.
The 74-year-old shared the health reason why he's turned down the show, revealing his wife Alison warned him against it.
"Alison was a dance tutor and she is convinced my knees wouldn’t stay the course," Alan lamented in an interview with Saga Magazine.
It's not just his health that prevented him from taking part in the BBC 1 show. "On top of that, it is a huge commitment; you start in September and you might be there until Christmas," Alan said. "There’s too much other stuff I need to be getting on with."
Though his knees cause him trouble, Alan is in otherwise good health, crediting gardening and medication for keeping him both mentally and physically well.
"You can’t force anyone to like gardening but what I do have a rant about sometimes is the lack of thanks it gets for contributing to our overall sanity," Alan said of the importance of gardening when it comes to mental health.
He continued: “When social media and 24-hour rolling news is pulling me down, I look out of the window and I see trees, the vegetables I planted. Of course I care about what is happening in the world, but I also need something to get me through each day."
That said, gardening is to blame for Alan's occasional aches and pains, with the green-fingered guy telling Yours that he has: "Stabbing pains in the back from carrying paving slabs and large posts.”
Alan does take health precautions too, sharing in 2020 that he takes medication to ward off the heart disease that killed his father, and well as pills to lower his cholesterol levels.
"I’m on statins. I wish I wasn’t. I don’t like the thought of taking tablets every day, but I’m following my doctor’s advice. He thinks it’s a good idea.
"The thing is, the men in my family have had a tendency to die from heart disease at a relatively young age. My dad, for instance, died suddenly in 1986 from a heart attack, aged just 62."