Talks will be held at St Peter’s Church, Worcester WR5 3TZ.
Talks will be held at St Peter’s Church, Worcester, WR5 3TZ, on the second Saturday of the month at 2pm, but please see below for any exceptions. At St Peter’s, entrance is free to Group members and we welcome visitors there but ask them to pay £5 - please contact for tickets. We will invite regular visitors to join the Group.
|Saturday January 8||2pm talk: What Have We Got That’s New For You?||Josh Egan‑Wyer|
|A look at the wonderful new plants which have been bred in recent years.
Allow Josh to open your mind and change your opinions on whole groups of plants you may have previously dismissed.|
Josh Egan-Wyer is Garden Centre & Nurseries Manager at Pershore College (part of WCG). Josh graduated from Pershore College with a BSc in Horticulture in 2013. He is extremely enthusiastic about plants and enjoys sharing his passion with anybody who takes an interest. Josh will bring a selection of plants for sale from the Pershore Garden Centre.
|Saturday February 12||2pm talk: Shady Characters||Andrew Ward|
|Some of the most outstanding plants we can grow in our gardens are happy in shade; Erythroniums, Orchids, Meconopsis and Arisaemas. This talk will look at the rare and more unusual shade loving plants. |
Dr Andrew Ward lectures widely throughout the UK and is a regular key note speaker for the Hardy Plant Society.
Andrew trained as a Plant Breeder and started Norwell Nurseries and Gardens 24 years ago with his wife Helen. Together they specialise in choice and unusual herbaceous perennials and alpine plants. The garden holds two National Collections; Hardy Chysanthemums and Astrantia and has more than 2,500 plant species. It has has featured in Country Living, Country Life, English Gardener, Landscaper Magazine, Gardens Illustrated and RHS The Garden magazine. Since 2013 the garden has been included in the prestigious Great Gardens to Visit. Renowned for it’s Spring colour the garden is at it’s peak in Autumn when the chrysanthemums are in full bloom. Andrew will bring plants from the Nursery; pre-order your plants from here: https://norwellnurseries.co.uk/Catalogue
|Saturday March 12||2pm AGM followed by
talk: Spring Plants to Enjoy
|Using live plant material Jeff will talk us through the attributes of his favourite Spring plants, share how best to grow them and how to combine them to optimum effect.|
Pershore College trained, Jeff spent many years working for Hilliers before setting up his own wholesale nursery business.
Jeff will bring a selection of plants for sale from his Nursery.
|Saturday April 9||2pm talk: Growing Dwarf and Compact Eucalyptus Trees in a Hardy Manner||Hilary Collins|
|Eucalyptus are an elegant and practical addition to every garden; pollinator friendly, pest-resistant with unusual bark their fragrant, evergreen leaves provide a habitat for wildlife, screening and shade for the garden as well as beautiful cut foliage for floristry.|
With the promise that there is a hardy Eucalyptus for every aspect, soil type and function Hilary will guide us through species selection, site preparation, planting and aftercare enabling you to find the perfect variety for your garden.
Hilary’s interest in plants began at a young age and was followed by a degree in Horticulture from the University of Bath.
Hilary co-founded Grafton Nursery with husband Steve and began researching Eucalyptus in 2000. Their spin-off enterprise Hardy Eucalyptus offers the widest range of Eucalyptus in the UK with more than 60 species in the portfolio, 36 of which will tolerate temperatures down to -20°C.
Multiple RHS medal winner, author, lecturer, researcher, grower and member of the Chartered Institute Of Horticulturalists, Hilary is recognised as the UK’s foremost Eucalyptus expert.
|Saturday May 7||2pm talk: Cornish Seascape Gardens||Richard Harvey|
|Join us for a spectacular tour of ten Cornish gardens beginning at Tresco Abbey in the Isles of Scilly and ending high on the clifftops above Porthcurno beach at the Minack gardens. From the jungle and desert biomes of the Eden Project to the mixed herbaceous borders of the Hidden Valley via exotic palms and shrubs at Tremenheere, Richard’s talk will include the history of these outstanding gardens and the best times of year to visit.|
Based in the Cotswolds, Richard's passion for botanical and garden photography began in childhood when his parents grew and exhibited plants. He now captures images for business and for pleasure. A member of the Garden Media Guild, Richard regularly contributes photographs and articles to online publications and is a regular speaker at a variety of garden locations across the UK.
|Saturday June 11||Grand Plant Sale - Details to follow|
|Saturday July 9||2pm talk: A Year In John’s Garden||Nigel Hopes|
|A visual guide through 12 months in John Massey's private garden at Ashwood Nursery through the eyes of Head Gardener, Nigel Hopes.|
Nigel will take us on a tour through the seasons highlighting his favourite plants and sharing plenty of horticultural tips along the way.
Nigel's passion for plants started as a boy when he was inspired by a family friend and the promise of free plants thanks to some fuchsia cuttings! Following work experience at Ashwood Nurseries, Nigel went on to study Horticulture at Rodbaston College then became a student at Birmingham Botanical Gardens and over the next 10 years became Rock & Alpine Supervisor and finally Senior Outdoor Supervisor. During this time, Nigel accumulated a wealth of plant knowledge and experience with placements at RHS Wisley, a plant hunting expedition to South Africa and as an active committee member showing plants with the Primula & Auricula Society. In 2018, Nigel embarked on a new challenge as Head Gardener for John Massey in his private garden at Ashwood Nurseries. Nigel can often be seen on open days giving guided tours, sharing his knowledge and explaining the new projects and developments.
|Saturday September 10||2pm talk: How To Garden The Low Carbon Way||Sally Nex|
|Right outside your back door is a startlingly diverse microcosm of natural habitats in concentrated form. Each of our gardens is a tiny carbon sink; every plant busily vacuuming carbon dioxide from the air and locking it away in the soil for years. As gardeners we have a chance to make a direct, practical difference in combatting climate change every time we plant a tree, mulch our soil or let the grass grow long.|
As our understanding of how gardens contribute to the wider environment evolves, this talk looks at how we can positively help and how to avoid the activities which can undo all our good work.
Sally Nex is a professional gardener, regular contributor to BBC Gardeners’ World magazine, RHS The Garden and Telegraph Gardening and author of two books which document her efforts to garden more sustainably; Growing Self-Sufficiency (Green Books, 2017) and How To Garden The Low Carbon Way (Dorling Kindersley, 2021).
Very occasionally, she gets a few minutes spare to tame her own, slightly wild garden in Somerset.
|Saturday October 8||2pm talk: Choice Plants for Late Season Interest||Paul Green|
|This practical talk challenges the common misconception that there is nothing to get excited about in the garden late in the season. Using live examples of shrubs, perennials and lots of grasses, Paul will prove his point.|
Plantsman, lecturer, educator and Rare Plant Fair organiser, Paul has always been interested in plants.
Defying the advice of his school careers adviser, Paul pursued his passion for plants.
and has successfully forged a career in commercial horticulture. Paul’s impressive CV includes foliage houseplant production in Worcestershire, hardy nursery stock production in Herefordshire and time spent at a specialist nursery in Oregon, USA.
After graduating from Pershore College in 1994, Paul established Green’s Leaves Nursery. Based in Newent, Gloucestershire, the nursery specialises in architectural plants and grasses, choice and rare shrubs and coloured foliage plants.
|Saturday November 12||2pm talk: Christopher Lloyd; His Life at Great Dixter||Stephen Anderton|
|In 2005, Stephen Anderton was commissioned by Christopher Lloyd to write his biography. This lecture tells the story of the man behind Britain’s most remarkable house and garden.|
Intrinsic to the narrative of the garden at Great Dixter is Christo’s upbringing in his extraordinary and often dysfunctional family. Based on his book, published by Chatto in 2010 Stephen will share the details of the life of the man as best-selling author, international lecturer, lovable eccentric, incurable writer of letters and in his later years, the grand old man of English gardening.
Stephen Anderton is an award winning garden writer for The Times, a magazine journalist, author, lecturer, broadcaster, television presenter and specialist garden holiday tour leader.
Before his writing career Stephen worked in the care of historic gardens, latterly as National Gardens Manager for English Heritage and was responsible for several major restoration projects in the North. His books have been translated into several languages and include Discovering Welsh Gardens (Graffeg), the biography Christopher Lloyd, His Life at Great Dixter (Chatto), Lives of the Great Gardeners (2016) and Stourhead (2019). He lives and gardens near Abergavenny in the Black Mountains and when not gardening writes music for the theatre.
A Patron of the Professional Gardener’s Guild’s Traineeship Appeal Stephen has been the Guild’s Vice-Chairman North, as well as Vice-Chairman of the Garden Writer’s Guild, Chairman of a Plant Heritage North East Group and a committee member for the Royal Horticultural Society and Garden History Society.
|Saturday December 10||2pm talk: Berried Treasures||Howard Drury|
|A seasonal lecture to accompany our Christmas social event. Howard will deliver an immersive horticultural experience covering plants with highly decorative fruits and berries, examining their contribution to our gardens and how valuable they are in conserving wildlife.|
Born in Lincolnshire, Howard was an early horticultural entrepreneur, selling lettuces at just 6 years old. During his school years he worked at local nurseries in his free time before embarking on a formal career path; training at local agricultural colleges before moving to study at Edinburgh Botanic Garden where he graduated with honours, scooping all but one of the top awards. After re-locating to Birmingham Howard worked for 20 years as a Horticultural Training Officer and as a researcher and presenter on Central television’s Gardening Time.
Author, lecturer, horticultural adviser and global garden tour leader. Howard continues to play an active role with ExtraCare Charitable Trust who have been using gardening as a therapy for more than 20 years.