Mr Bloom star Ben Faulks gets 'rather fruity letters' from mothers
Mr Bloom actor Ben Faulks admitted to receiving a few "rather fruity letters" from mothers who have found an unlikely sex symbol in the children's show gardener.
He plays a jolly horticulturist in CBeebies programme Mr Bloom's Nursery alongside his basket of vegetable pals, but he has grown an army of admirers among the parents of his young viewers, much to his embarrassment.
Speaking about whether there had been any advances made on him by such mothers, he told the Mirror: "Well, there have been letters. Er yes, rather fruity letters. And Valentine's cards. Maybe a few marriage proposals.
"One lady knitted me a lovely turnip, which I've still got. I'm flattered mums find Mr Bloom an endearing fellow despite his wellies and tank top.
"I give all credit to the make-up department, prosthetics and special effects. It's nice to know there's a lot of love out there."
The green-fingered actor, 37, has been the subject of lewd posts on the CBeebies Facebook page and had questions censored during a webchat with Mumsnet - but he claimed he was in the dark about the extent of his adoration.
He said: "I wasn't really aware of the mood because I don't use social media. Although it is funny when you turn up at a gig and there's a raving atmosphere - it can knock your socks off."
Disappointingly for his fans, Faulks is married to wife Mimi and the pair have three children aged four, six and eight.
"She thinks it's very, very laughable," he admitted of his admirers.
He confessed that gardening-wise he was "not a patch on Mr Bloom", but said he would be happy to turn his hand to some shirtless scything like Aidan Turner in Poldark for the right role.
"I grew up in Cornwall so I remember Poldark years and years ago. It's certainly changed a bit now. But yeah, I'd do a Poldark and am up for a bit of topless hay-baling.
"But not as Mr Bloom - it would have to be in another role. Mr Bloom's tank top is surgically attached."
The show has become one of the most popular on the children's channel since it began in 2011.
But asked if the show had made him rich, he replied: "The short answer is no. You've got to be very lucky to hit the big time because there's so much competition."
His acting career is on the rise after starring opposite Katie Price in panto at Christmas and a role in Hollyoaks.
He next appears in CBeebies Ballet: The Tortoise And The Hare on March 28 at 11am on the CBeebies channel.