Saturday, January 25, 2020

This blog has moved !

This is my old blog, which I will keep as an archive. 

I am now blogging entirely from my website:

See you there!

Sunday, August 11, 2019

Dutch garden and landscape travels

Well here we are. Another slightly lonely night in the camper van. I'm trundling around The Netherlands researching a possible book on contemporary Dutch garden design. It was an idea the leading Dutch garden photographer Maayke de Ridder and I thought up some time ago. We think we have a publisher now but it is all still a bit speculative. Anyway a great way of meeting people and learning more about a dynamic gardening and design culture.

Read on here:

Sunday, June 23, 2019

Mind the Gap!

Why is so much perennial planting so gappy?

Why do so many gardens, private and public, which are supposed to be about growing plants, look like displays of soil or exhibitions of mulch?
Here, I'd like to address the whole issue of planting density, with some observations based on the results of a seven year trial which has just been published in The Plantsman journal.

Sunday, March 31, 2019

Why is Britain in such a mess? Part Two

If you are watching, horrified, at the continuing political chaos in Britain you may like to read Part Two of my occasional political posting 'Why is Britain in such a mess?' It's an attempt to explain to outsiders, especially the often anglophile garden community, what is going on. Brits might like to take a look too. It's not meant to re-assuring!

Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Horti-Culture in Camellia-City Porto

Porto in northern Portugal is the city of the camellia. The public parks and people’s gardens are full of them. For those of us who are only used to seeing them as head high, or maybe in Cornwall, up to the first storey, these are huge. And the city clearly loves them. Last weekend, the city council put on its annual camellia festival.

Read on here-----

Sunday, February 10, 2019

Secrets to using grasses

Grasses simply are the best thing in the garden right now. At the most dismal time of year, when there is almost nothing else to take our minds off grey skies and cold winds, grasses can not just make an impact but actually look really good. Read on here.......

This is the first of a new secondary blog posting I am now doing for Learning with Experts - this is more practically-orientated and entry-level than my main blog, but always with little bit of detail on plant and garden history, ecology etc.

 Here is the link to blogs from the Learning with Experts group.

Picture credit: Jason Ingram
Jason is one of our leading garden photographers. You can come and learn the tricks of the trade from him through our Garden Masterclass programme.

Saturday, January 26, 2019

Olivier Filippi and the Mediterranean garden of the future

An overview of the garden created by Olivier and Carla Filippi over the last thirty years. To many of us it appears to be a quintessentially Mediterranean landscape, all those grey hummocks and of course the Italian cypresses. The visual balance between these two elements is powerful as well as symbolising a harmony between the natural and the cultural. The cypresses may be native to the region but the narrow form is the result of a long period of selection and the tree’s wide range is a reflection of centuries of planting.

Carry on reading here: