October 2019 Meeting

Nick Bailey – 365 Days of Colour

Nick Bailey, a regular presenter on Gardener’s World, came to Felpham on Tuesday evening to talk to the Felpham & Middleton Horticultural Society about “365 Days of Colour in your Garden”.   The meeting was very well attended with 100 members and 49 visitors of which 13 became members.

Nick’s career of over 25 years in horticulture spans landscape and garden design, garden management, teaching, writing and broadcasting.  He has created and managed gardens on four continents including redesigning the gardens and diversifying the plant collection at London’s Chelsea Physic Garden for the past seven years.  In 2016 he designed his first Main Avenue Garden at RHS Chelsea Flower Show, receiving extensive plaudits from the press and judges along with a Silver Gilt Medal. His film on plants associated with Shakespeare for Gardeners’ World won best TV programme at the Garden Media Guild Awards in 2016.

Nick began his broadcasting career presenting  “Gardens Wild and Wonderful”  in South Africa (1995-6) and spent four years as a panellist on BBC Radio Norfolk’s “Garden Party”.   Since then he has appeared on BBC 2’s “Great British Garden Revival”, “Big Dreams Small Spaces”, “ITV News”, “The One Show”,  BBC Radio 4’s “Food Programme” and presented RHS Flower Shows coverage for the BBC.

His horticultural media career spans some 15 years including work as an editor for “Garden Answers” and “Garden News”, freelance writing for the “RHS The Garden”, “The Mail”, “The Times” and “The Telegraph”.  Nick currently has regular columns in “Garden News”, and BBC “Gardeners’ World Magazine” for which he was awarded “Property Press Awards’ Garden Journalist of the Year 2017”.

Nick’s first book “Chelsea Physic Garden – A Companion Guide” was published in 2014, followed by “365 Days of Colour in your Garden” in 2015 which has been an Amazon best seller ever since.  His latest title, “Revive Our Garden” has received much praise for its practical and inspirational help to bring a garden back to life. 

 Nick was a very entertaining speaker – using the colour wheel to illustrate how harmonious colour combinations can be achieved by putting the right plants together.  He explained that we can, in fact, have colour all year round in our garden by extending the flowering season and gave lots of suggestions for those months of the year – November through to February – when we struggle.

Nick finished his talk by giving us an interesting insight into the filming of “Gardeners’ World”, (including some funny anecdotes!) and also creating a garden at Chelsea.  

As Don Faircloth, Society Show Secretary, said, when giving the vote of thanks, he was reminded of the Eric and Ernie sketch with Andre Previn when Eric explained that he was playing “all the right notes, but not necessarily in the right order”.  Nick encouraged us to rethink our borders to gain maximum colour and longevity and enjoy the winter planning our borders for next year.