Can a walk be a garden? The High Line revisited by Bridget Rosewell.

January 25, 2017

We’re back, troublesome as ever. Has anyone else bar Bridget found the High Line less than perfect? Count on thinkingardens for a different view… Anne Wareham, editor           Bridget Rosewell: What is it about the High Line in New York which generates such plaudits?  I visited it in the summer of […]

Having a Break

December 16, 2016

Hi everyone. I bet you’re all upset and worried because you haven’t seen a thinkingardens post for a while. “What will we think about?” I hear you cry. We’re all daft like this, us bloggers – think the world will fall apart if we have a break. Well, I’m going to have one. I’ve worked […]



‘There is a place for jokes, and a place for not-jokes’ – Ambra Edwards meets Ian Hamilton Finlay

December 1, 2016

This is the first of a series of repeated and rejuvenated early articles from thinkingardens. I’ve been aware for some time that there are excellent pieces on here which many people don’t find. (though there is an index on site) And that if they did, they’d find some of them rather less presentable than I’d like, […]

Small gardens, anyone? Book Review by Susan Wright

November 17, 2016

Is this the book everyone wants? Small gardens? Anne Wareham, editor. New Small Garden reviewed by Susan Wright New Small Garden is Noel Kingsbury’s latest book.  It’s a comprehensive guide to the  “principles, planting and practice” of small gardens, a statement accurately reflected in the content. Though the gardens featured don’t look what you may […]



Designers Damned by Lou Nicholls

November 3, 2016

I know that garden designers, gardeners and garden makers read and contribute to thinkingardens, so here’s a cat to set amongst you pigeons. Does it hit a spot? Or is it totally unreal? Feel free to comment, or even to offer a piece countering the case made here. Anne Wareham, editor         What […]

More Monet from Paul Steer

October 13, 2016

Never imagine that a book review on thinkingardens will be boring. Or that it will only tell you about the book being reviewed. There’s usually more meat on the bone, just as there is with this one by Paul Steer, – an artist and NGS garden opener. Anne Wareham, editor       Review by […]



The Lesson of Beth Chatto’s Gravel Garden

September 29, 2016

Troy Scott-Smith  suggested that Andrea Russo and Paola Avesani would be good people to review Beth Chatto’s latest book Drought Resistant Planting. It turned out that language problems were going to make that difficult, so instead they wrote a piece for thinkingardens about their interest in learning from Beth Chatto’s garden. Anne Wareham, editor       […]

Old Fashioned? Review by Mark Laurence

September 15, 2016

One of the earliest books I bought was Beth Chatto’s ‘The Dry Garden’  (1978) – no idea why since I garden in the wet West. (I did buy ‘The Damp Garden’ too though.) Dry gardens are still her theme thirty eight years later. Wonder if you’d be better off with the first one? This review will […]



Robin’s Big Statement by Paul Morgan

September 1, 2016

In the spring I visited a garden. It doesn’t matter which or where. It was perfectly adequate as a garden apart from having no seats. But it left me cold. And I realised that that is the thing which probably always comes first – the emotional response. Judgement follows. As Paul Morgan now explains. Anne Wareham, […]

Gardeners, Designers – or Garden Makers? by Anne Wareham

August 18, 2016

My apologies. This was not the piece I intended to publish this week, and I had no intention of popping up again so soon to annoy you. But today I got annoyed and you know how rare that is. For many years I had wanted to define and articulate the difference between those people who […]



Want to get Published? by Claire Austin

July 28, 2016

If you’ve ever wondered about the freedom of no agent, no editor, no publisher, just you, your words and freedom – this is for you. Hope it helps. Anne Wareham, editor          WRITING THAT BOOK by Claire Austin   THE NEED FOR KNOWLEDGE All gardeners want to grow plants, but what they […]

Sissinghurst – forever, for everyone? by John Sales

July 15, 2016

I thought that this response to last week’s piece, Commercial at what Cost? from John Sales, the National Trust’s chief gardens adviser until his retirement in 1998, merited a separate post. Anne Wareham, editor   John Sales:  Your thoughtful piece about Troy Smith’s approach to the job at Sissinghurst raises some important issues.The first is that […]



Commercial at what cost? by Anne Wareham

July 5, 2016

I’ve thought a lot about what Troy Scott-Smith is up against at Sissinghurst and I gather he is appearing on Gardener’s World this week (8th July) to talk about it. These are some of my reflections about on Sissinghurst’s revitalisation and the issues it raises. Anne Wareham, editor           Commercial at […]

All that business? by Bella D’Arcy Reed

June 16, 2016

A post about access to gardens for people on wheels. I have to acknowledge regretfully that Veddw is not wheelchair accessible. The slopes are too steep and our bathroom very small and up a step. But clearly it is important that gardens should do better than that wherever possible. Anne Wareham, editor         […]