Chelsea Flower Show 2016 Retrospective: The LG Smart Garden

  There are only so many hours in the day following a Chelsea Flower Show, and much to my chagrin I did not get around to writing about Hay Joung Hwang’s debut show garden in 2016. There’s no better time to put that right than the day after Hay’s second Chelsea garden won silver-gilt: an […]

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Watergate House, Fordwich: A Modern Romantic Garden

The town of Fordwich has the distinction of being the smallest in England. Situated on the River Stour, which connects Canterbury with the English Channel, it was to Fordwich that the Normans shipped tonnes of pale Caen stone to build the city’s cathedral. At Watergate House the precious cargo arrived safely on English soil after […]

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Tales from the Gin & Tonic Garden

  As a rule, I don’t sit down, unless it’s to eat a meal or to work. When I make myself a cup of tea I tend to perch for the first sip and then get on with the next job that needs doing. When I read a book, it’s usually for 15 minutes before […]

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In a Tuscan Garden

  My job takes me to all sorts of interesting places, some nice, some not so nice, but always interesting. This week I have been in Tuscany learning about winemaking and tasting some remarkable wines. This definitely counts as ‘nice’, or ‘bello’ as the Italians would say. Italy is my favourite place to travel, exceeding […]

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Going to The Chapel

  When a new garden opens for the National Gardens Scheme in Thanet it’s a major event, principally because there are only three others, one of which is my own. And this year’s newcomer, situated in an isolated rural spot known as Thorne Hill, is a beauty. Created by Andrew Montgomery, The Chapel is a […]

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British Flowers Week 2016

  On one subject, and possibly one subject only, do Him Indoors and I agree: there must always be flowers in our house. Sadly neither of our gardens is large enough to accommodate a cut flower patch so we must buy in blooms to adorn our kitchen work tops, mantels and sideboards. We would have flowers in […]

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RHS London Rose Show 2016

  It’s a good sign when the Royal Horticultural Society show schedule is growing rather than shrinking. Last year an early summer London Rose Show was added to the programme; this November the inaugural London Urban Garden Show will introduce gardeners to a host of tropical and subtropical plant growers; and next year we have […]

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In the Pink

It’s early June and the hedgerows of England are at their most ebullient. Nowhere are they more vivacious than in the West County where the crystal clear air permits colours to pop and sparkle. Warmed by the summer sun, refreshed by the last rains of spring, our hedges are flushed with foxgloves, ferns, campions and buttercups, […]

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Chelsea Physic Garden – Nick Bailey’s ‘Best in Snow’

Early in February I went along to the Chelsea Physic Garden for one of their annual snowdrop days. I was lucky enough to bag a ticket for head gardener Nick Bailey’s ‘Best in Snow’ walk, where he described very eloquently a dozen or so of his favourite plants for winter colour. Not many of them can […]

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The Very Best of 2014 – A Year In Pictures

I embark on my review of 2014 with a degree of trepidation, as this year did not turn out to be quite as joyful as I hoped it might be. The two preceding years were gloriously packed with exotic travel and big events, so in hindsight 2014 was probably never going to live up to expectations. There have […]

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