Doddington Place Gardens

Near Sittingbourne, Kent.

Maude Smith celebrates the natural world in tea towels and tiles.

Posted: January 20th, 2021

Of the many imaginative creative projects that have sprung out of Covid, Maude Smith’s range of tea towels and tiles celebrating the natural world have jumped out at me from Instagram. (@maude_made) The beguiling tea towels have a naïve charm with a particularly English sensibility. Butterflies, grasses, leaves, mushrooms, sheep,…

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Legendary plantsman, Maurice Foster

Posted: November 9th, 2020

Over the years, White House Farm, near Sevenoaks, has become a mecca for plantsmen the world over. Home to more than 200 different kinds of magnolia, hundreds of hydrangeas (many of them bred by Maurice), an outstanding collection of climbing roses, a fine arboretum of more than 3000 trees and…

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Faversham Open Gardens 2019

Posted: June 18th, 2019

If you love visiting gardens you are in for a treat on Sunday 30th June, when an astonishing tally of 30 gardens are taking part in Faversham Open Gardens Day. The attractive ancient market town in East Kent has much to offer - fine architecture, good eateries, a fascinating history…

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Flower Fairies

Posted: August 10th, 2018

Do you believe in Fairies? In today’s technological world I am pleased to say that fairies are as popular as ever. The desire to escape and believe is still potent. Young, middle-aged and aged fairy fanciers are flocking to the ‘Flower Fairies’ exhibition at the Garden Museum until 30 September 2018. There…

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Mistletoe and Holly Christmas Auctions

Posted: November 27th, 2017

If you are planning a traditional Victorian style Christmas with the halls decked with holly and a bunch of mistletoe above the front door you should make haste to Tenbury Wells tomorrow and the following two Tuesdays. ‘We will be selling more than 600 lots of mistletoe,’ says auctioneer Nick…

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West Woodhay Gardeners’ Fair

Posted: June 13th, 2017

The West Woodhay Gardeners' Fair in association with the National Garden Scheme on the 23-25th June near Newbury, Berkshire, has rapidly established a reputation as a mecca for plant enthusiasts. It is a winning combination of renowned nurseries in the setting of a 25 acre garden not regularly open to…

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Bloomin’ Jewels

Posted: May 8th, 2017

As gardens spring into life, contemporary floral jewellery is celebrated in thrilling Bloomin’ Jewels, a selling exhibition at Contemporary Applied Arts (CCA). ‘I thought, let’s go crazy,’ says Christine Lalumia, the enthusiastic director of CAA, telling me how the exhibition came about. ‘What can we do to bring gardens to…

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The National Garden Scheme Snowdrop Festival

Posted: January 30th, 2017

Hurrah for the National Gardens Scheme (NGS) Snowdrop Festival which is on throughout February. As the days are beginning to lengthen and signs of spring emerge the prospect of a garden visit is a welcome tonic, whether you want to admire the different varieties of snowdrops or have a walk…

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A Romantic Scottish Island Garden

Posted: July 22nd, 2016

  Anyone going to the ravishingly beautiful Isle of Mull in the Scottish Inner Hebrides this August should make a beeline for Torosay Castle.  Just a few minutes drive from the ferry at Craignure, it is one of the most beguiling and romantic gardens I have ever visited. If walking appeals there is a good path from Craignure…

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Great Christmas gift ideas for gardeners

Posted: October 29th, 2015

It's that time of year again.  Christmas present lists are beginning to litter everyone's kitchen tables.  If you are near the delightful Kentish Wealden town, Hawkhurst, you must visit Cranbrook Iron's 'pop up' shop opening on the 6th November at Septimus Quayles, Ockley Road, Hawkhurst, Kent TN18 4DP. In addition there will…

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