Noel Kingsbury



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 […]

Garden allusions, by Noel Kingsbury, Anne Wareham, and Yue Zhuang

April 6, 2016

This piece, originally posted as ‘Allusion in Gardens’ arose out of a discussion about my use of an informal box parterre at Veddw. The intention is to allude to the local field boundaries indicated on the Tithe Map of the area in 1848, creating a link with the surrounding landscape. Definition of ‘allusion’. The discussion […]



Berchigranges Garden reviewed by Noel Kingsbury

November 26, 2015

Another garden review, and, as Noel says, also an opportunity for someone to get in there and wreck it..maybe take over. Anyone game? And is it the most beautiful garden in the world (apart from Veddw, of course)? And do you share Noel’s criteria for a special garden? This piece appeared originally in Noel’s blog, […]

This other Eden, demi-paradise? – a review by Noel Kingsbury

April 3, 2015

Such a relief when someone says ‘fantastic doesn’t mean flawless’…. Thanks, Noel! Anne Wareham, editor   Review of the Eden Project by Noel Kingsbury The Eden Project, since its opening in 1999, has kept itself in the top 15 or so British tourist attractions. Brilliant, given that its subject matter, economic botany, was always the […]



Are Gardens Art? review by Helen Gazeley

August 8, 2014

The promised review of the Royal Horticultural Event at Wisley. Thanks to Helen Gazeley for the review, Suzanne Moss for organising the event and Charles Hawes for the photographs. And here is a recording of the entire proceedings. (warning- it’s over an hour long…) Anne Wareham, editor Helen Gazeley: Are Gardens Art? This was the […]

Not just a load of old coneflowers by Victoria Summerley.

May 15, 2014

Well, the biter bit. I keep contributors waiting for their pieces to be published for far too long. Just sometimes a contributor does the same thing and serves me right. Sorry Noel… Anne Wareham, editor A review of ‘Planting, a new perspective’, by Noel Kingsbury and Piet Oudolf by Victoria Summerley: First, I must apologise […]



Clump or Mingle? by Noel Kingsbury

October 31, 2013

Now, after all that discussion and noise in response to Thomas Rainer’s piece  about intermingling planting, here is Noel’s reply to Thomas. (and sorry, he hadn’t read all your comments before writing it..) I must apologise to all those who deplore my  (quote) “relentless puffing of Veddw garden everywhere you can, especially on thinkingardens”  but it […]

Mingle or clump? by Thomas Rainer

October 29, 2013

This is going to be challenging and interesting, everyone, (get your brains out) and it is just what thinkingardens is for. Recently Thomas Rainer published a post on his excellent blog raising questions in response to Noel Kingsbury and Piet Oudolf’s latest book, Planting, a New Perspective. I asked him to write us a piece […]



James van Sweden – a memoir by Noel Kingsbury

October 24, 2013

A short time ago James van Sweden died. I vividly remember the excitement I felt when I first came across the book ‘Bold Romantic Gardens’ which he wrote with Wolfgang Oehme. (It seems my copy is now worth £60.10) Noel Kingsbury wrote a memoir on his blog  and also kindly gave me permission to use it here. […]

A horticultural conflict

May 6, 2013

I can’t offer you anything but links for this, but they are links worth following. The background is the publication of Noel Kingsbury and Piet Oudolf’s new book ‘Planting, a new perspective’. The first link is the usual paean of praise for Piet Oudolf, which gives us the context: a Telegraph piece by Tom Stuart […]



Noel Kingsbury’s Blog reviewed by Nick Leech

August 6, 2012

Here, at long last, the first of our reviews of garden blogs – thank you, Nick Leech. Noel is a good friend of mine, good fun, knowledgeable and generous – though he’s always struck me as a teeny bit smug. This will not succeed in making him less so.. Anne Wareham, editor Nick Leech: Reviewing a blog […]

Pothole Gardens by Felicity Waters

March 10, 2010

“…the photos below show the best form of roadscaping that I have ever seen in the UK….”



Noel Kingsbury on “Girly Gardens – or not?”

February 25, 2008

“I’ve had a look at the Ann Pearce garden, and for I’m afraid me it sums up so much of what I really hate about modern garden design – subjectively I found it sterile and unfeeling; objectively unsustainable and wildlife-unfriendly. Sorry, I hate saying this about people’s work, but we are meant to be engaged in a debate here, and I am just going to say what I think. Give me a girly garden full of flowers. Or for that matter an old guy with loads of petunias and French marigolds at 330mm intervals. Or a load of weeds…”

Girly Gardens – or not?

February 11, 2008

by Bridget Rosewell.
“I am not interested in girly – give me gorgeous though. I would describe the Ann Pearce garden as ‘impressive’ and ‘striking’ but not ‘gorgeous’. Gorgeous implies something more?”