My first memories are of land: the rolling wooded pastures of the Exe valley. My father’s family stems from there, living in the same thatched cottage that my grandfather, his father and his father lived.
My grandfather was a rural science teacher and my guide. We would go for long walks along the river Exe spotting kingfishers and otter evidence. As we walked, he talked and wove tales about the place and us, us and the place, – binding me to the landscape. As a young child I looked at the red soil of the riverside and the tall waving heads of rushes and the skies full of screaming swallows and my sprit took root. I have been a committed environmentalist ever since.
Horticulture and garden design is my second career. Before I had children and a mortgage I worked as a TV producer and director and dreamed about writing and performing in the theatre.
Plants and garden-making snuck up on me. I initially just wanted to save some stag beetles and create bit of an oasis in London. I found life in London challenging, I was used to space and quiet and contact with the elements, and I ended up becoming homesick (what we now understand as “biophilia”). It was my little London garden with two trees and birds and insects and the feel of the soil that made me sane at the weekend.
I have all the requisite qualifications that make me both a garden designer and trained gardener: a Garden Design Diploma from Merrist Wood and a RHS2 in Practical Horticultural Theory from Bristol University. However, it has been my fortunate ability to constantly fiddle in my own gardens that has allowed me the space to develop and grow.
I am always looking to collaborate with fellow landscapers, soil scientists, entomologists, gardeners, architects, designers and artists. Please don’t hesitate to get in touch – my gate is always open!