My true passion in life is digging the dirt, pottering with plants and creating gardens where memories can be made. And it all began when I was just 3 years old and made my first garden in a washing up bowl and I have been gardening ever since!
I got my interest in gardening and growing plants from my parents and learnt the craft from masters of the art in local parks, horticultural college and the Royal Botanic Garden, Edinburgh where I did my professional training. I have since spent more than 45 years sharing my knowledge and passion with gardening enthusiasts through my articles in national newspapers and magazines.
I am currently the gardening editor and columnist for the Sunday People and Woman’s Weekly and was previously an award-winning editor of Practical Gardening, Garden Answers and Your Garden magazines.
I put my career success down to the fact that I am naturally nosey and always ready for a chat over a garden gate. I also love to visit nurseries and gardens and especially when I have the opportunity to trade information, pick up planting and design ideas as well as improve my technical knowledge. My main aim when I write is to give new gardeners in particular, the know-how and confidence to become their own garden expert and above everything, inspire people to “go gardening”.
I enjoy passing on the tips and tricks that I have learned from other gardeners and from my own hands-on experience and look to other adventurous and creative gardeners for planting ideas that I can be recycle and embellish and use in other gardening projects. I am also interested in encouraging people to take a more eco-friendly approach when gardening, making their gardens child and pet friendly and learning how to become more self-sufficient in life.
Over the years, I have had the pleasure and priviledge to meet and write about plantsmen, gardeners and those involved in arts and crafts from all walks of life. I’ve also been lucky enough to go behind the scenes of some of the most wonderful and inspiring nurseries and gardens at home and abroad. My travels have taken me to the USA, China, Philippines, South Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean plus gardens in Europe and the UK. These incredible journeys have all played a part in growing my interest in travel, tropical plants and in particular folk medicine.
In my spare time, I am a keen cook and spent many a year, cooking up paella with my friend Nick to sell at gourmet food markets and events. I also like listening to music, especially folk, Latin and rock and dancing – I’m a real ’70s babe. I enjoy going for walks in the country plus visiting art galleries and museums. My real joy though, is spending time with my family and especially my grandson Jacob, who at 4 years old is already proving to be a budding gardener and interested in nature.
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