Long Border at The Garden House (Society Holiday destination)

Floral Art
Floral Art Spring 2016


Evening Meetings

Our Programme for 2017 comprises monthly evening meetings, a selection of outings/visits and our three annual shows.  We also  hold a number of social events.
for a brief account of past meetings please click here


            (details of start times and travel arrangements available when booking)

January 24th (Tuesday)   Social Lunch, Beachcroft Hotel, Felpham

April 20th (Thursday)       Ploughman's Feast - St Mary's Centre, Felpham

May 17th (Wednesday)   All day outing to Ham House, Richmond and Secretts                                              Garden Centre                           

July 3rd - 7th                     Society Holiday - Yelverton and RHS Rosemoor

July 20th (Thurs)               Afternoon outing to Fittleworth House
t 15th             Morning outing to Harbourside , Prinsted

October 12th (Thurs)       Harvest Lunch  -   St Mary's Centre, Felpham


                         (All shows on Saturdays 2pm to 4.30pm)
March 25th                          SPRING SHOW

June 17th   
                           ROSE & SWEET PEA SHOW

August 19th                         FLOWER & PRODUCE SHOW

                                 Evening Meetings
           (all evening meetings are at St Mary's Centre, Felpham and start at 7.30pm)

Feb 28th               Steve Austin            -       Beth Chatto's Garden - Her Plants and Me  
March 28th         
Jean Griffin               -      Tales from the Potting Shed  
April 25th             
David Fitton             -      Conservatory and Patio Gardening                 

May 23rd              
Martin Jarvis            -      Growing Herbs              

June 27th              Andy Stevens           -      Borde Hill Garden
July 25th              Marcus Dancer           -      How to grow  Clematis successfully
                                            (Flower Competition for Members only)                            

September 26th     Ben Cross
               -      Alstromerias 
October 24th         Jim Butress
              -      65 years in Horticulture  
November 28th                        ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING

                                                 (Members Only)

      For  brief details of the speakers at each meeting  please click on the speakers' name


Beth Chatto's Garden and Me

Steve has been involved in horticulture for over 11 years.  He trained at Wittle College and obtained his Masters with the RHS.  He worked for 8 years at Hilliers under Andy MacIndoe and was involved in preparing Beth Chatto’s garden for the summer seasons.  He is now an international horticulture consultant.

Beth Chatto OBE is an award-winning plantswoman. Her work here at the Gardens began in 1960. She took an overgrown wasteland of brambles, parched gravel and boggy ditches, transforming it using plants adapted by nature to thrive in different conditions.  What was once a car park is now a world-renowned Gravel Garden (which is never watered), and the dozens of plants Beth used to give to friends and family have morphed into one of the UK's leading plantsman's nurseries.

Beth Chatto was born in 1923 to enthusiastic gardening parents. After working as a teacher she married the late Andrew Chatto in 1943. His life long interest in the origins of plants influenced the development of the Gardens and our use of plants to this day.

Following Andrew’s retirement, in 1960 the Chatto family built their new home on a wasteland that had been part of the Chatto fruit farm. The site presented many difficulties for starting a garden including low annual rainfall. It was to Andrew’s plant research that they turned.

Informed by his knowledge Beth selected plants for a series of Gardens that could thrive under the different conditions. Through gifts of seeds and cuttings a large collection of unusual plants and a good knowledge of propagation was acquired.
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Tales from the Potting Shed

Jean Griffin is the roving gardening reporter on Sylvie Blackmore's show. She's usually found out and about across the Southern Counties looking out for gardening gems.

Jean Griffin was eduacated at Neath Girls Grammar School before starting professional horticultural courses, firstly at Studley College  in Warwickshire and secondly at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.

She has spent all her life working in both the Amenity and Commercial sections of the horticultural industry, with the past 20 years working in Horticultural Education. Jean teaches people from all age groups and varying abilities.

She has been involved with the BBC Southern Countieas Radio Gardening programme since the 1970s and enjoys helping others by passing on her gardening experiences. Jean gives talks to Horticultural Societies, is Chairman of the Central Sussex Alpine Group and is a judge for the 'Britain in Bloom' Campaign Jean is an enthusiastic facilitator and, in her own words is a plant-aholic!

Catch Jean most Sundays on Sylvie Blackmore's show in the first two hours between 1300 and 1500 as we tackle all things gardening.
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Conservatory and Patio Gardening

Wisley-trained and a fellow of the Institute of Horticulture, David is a full member of the Garden Media Guild.  He is experienced in parks, gardens and horticultural education.  He is the former head of Horticulture at Plumpton College and currently runs a Garden Advisory Service and Horticultural Consultancy.  He is a lecturer, broadcaster on local radio, plant doctor, garden tour leader and guest speaker on cruise ships.
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Martin runs the Culberry Nursery, a family-owned nursery growing herbs both culinary and medicinal. The nursery was started by his parents in 1948 as a market garden.  Martin’s career has included growing bedding plants at Manor Nursery to supply local Councils.

Culberry Nursery supplies herbs direct to the public via Farmers’ Markets, Bairds and Manor Nursery.  The nursery is also open to the public.

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Borde Hill Garden

Set within an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty with spectacular views over the Sussex Weald and the Ouse Valley, Borde Hill’s grounds extend to over 200 acres across the garden, woodland and parkland. The 17 acres of formal garden are designed in a series of outdoor ‘rooms’, each with its own distinctive character, colour and scent. From the exotic ‘Garden of Allah’ and the beautiful Azelea Ring, to the traditional Rose Garden and peaceful Italian Garden, Borde Hill is a treat for the senses. Our historic Garden is constantly evolving with new plantings and designs to add to variety, colour and interest throughout the year.

Borde Hill has received numerous awards, including the Historic Houses Association ‘Garden of the Year’.

Springtime’s magnificent displays of early flowering magnolias,  camellias, rhododendrons and azaleas are a sight to behold. Summer’s warmth brings out the glorious fragrance of hundreds of roses and the colourful blooms in the herbaceous borders. Autumn transforms the colours of the many mature and award-winning trees in the Grade II* listed landscape. The Garden is dotted with seating and areas where you can simply sit in peaceful contemplation and let the world pass by.

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  How to grow Clematis Successfully

Marcus has been in horticulture since he left school and has had is own nursery in Sandleheath, near Fordingbridge for the past 20 years.  Marcus specialises in clematis and also grows a number of other climbers.  He will be bringing plants for sale which he has raised on his nursery.

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"British Alstroemeria & The UK Cut Flower Industry"

Ben Cross from Crosslands Flower Nursery is the third generation of his family to grow alstroemerias in a wholesale nursery in Walberton near Arundel, West Sussex. His parents and uncles also work on the nursery.

Ben studied and worked in marine science and oceanography before returning to tend more than thirty different varieties of alstroemerias under 3 acres of glass all year round. 30 years ago there were lots of similar nurseries growing cut flowers all over the UK but the trend for importing cut flowers grown in Kenya, Colombia and Ecuador has sadly led to their demise.

Ben’s nursery tours and talks are popular with flower clubs and horticultural societies who flock to see one of the few surviving old style horticultural establishments. ‘I feel very passionate about keeping the nursery going. It is a lifestyle like farming, not a job’ says Ben with heartfelt passion.

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65 years in Horticulture

From an early age Jim's passion for gardening and horticulture was evident. Much preferring seed catalogues to academic studies his scholarly career was terminated by mutual consent between his father and the heads of both of the schools he attended.

Armed with just a certificate in cycling proficiency, he entered the world of horticulture and began training at RHS Wisley. This was to be the start of a career that would span over half a century.

Starting at a local nursery, he moved to Croydon Parks, on to the Greater London Council, and ended up with the Royal Parks in London, where he was responsible for Hyde Park, St James Park, Clarence House and Buckingham Palace. He ended his career as the Superintendent of Greenwich Park.

He has won eight gold medals at RHS Chelsea and in recognition of his unrivalled contribution to horticulture, in 2006, he was awarded the highest accolade possible in the gardening world, the Victoria Medal of Honour (VMH).

A popular speaker he now devotes much of his time giving talks to audiences ranging from corporate after dinner speaking through to societies and clubs. He has never lost touch with grass roots and actively supports schools and local projects in spreading his joy of gardening.

He has appeared on TV in a documentary about the World Garden at Lullingstone and recently as the ever popular judge in The Great Allotment Challenge. Jim is a regular radio presenter and appears on BBC Radio Sussex/Surrey Dig It.

It is probably not a surprise and it was only a matter of time that it would be recognised that this man would be the subject of a great book. Lo and behold Jim Buttress The Peoples Gardener which was published mid May 2016. Aptly named, his recollections of his lifetime will be avid reading.

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