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Meet: Geoff Duggan, landscape planning officer, The Australian Botanic Garden

Meet: Geoff Duggan, landscape planning officer, The Australian Botanic Garden

A discussion with Geoff Duggan about his work creating native daisy meadows at the Australian Botanic Garden in Mount Annan.

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Meet: Geoffrey Head, Nielsen Park bush regenerator

Meet: Geoffrey Head, Nielsen Park bush regenerator

Geoffrey Head has spent the last 12 years tending to the Eastern Suburbs jewel-in-the-crown Nielsen Park. Today we catch up with him.

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Meet: George Low, David Jones Sydney flower show designer

Meet: George Low, David Jones Sydney flower show designer

George talks about 20 years working with the iconic David Jones flower show in Sydney.

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Meet: Gil Teague, bookseller

Meet: Gil Teague, bookseller

Gil Teague’s Florilegium has published some of our best garden writers, including Peter Valder, Margaret Hibbert, Michael McCoy and Alistair Hay, but we know it best as Australia’s only specialist garden bookshop.


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Meet: Graeme Parr: wisteria expert

Meet: Graeme Parr: wisteria expert

Oh hello big dose of flower envy. We'd do any thing for wisteria! Graeme has been growing wisteria for the nursery trade for 20 years. Here he shares his top tips for growing great flowering wisteria.

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Meet: Holly Kerr Forsyth, garden writer, friend and philospher

Meet: Holly Kerr Forsyth, garden writer, friend and philospher

We pop into Holly's garden, stay for tea and fall a little bit in love.

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Meet: Indira Naidoo, passionate balcony gardener

Meet: Indira Naidoo, passionate balcony gardener

Former ABC and SBS newsreader Indira Naidoo followed her passion for food all the way to a balcony garden - and a book, ‘The Edible Balcony’. We spoke with her about the value of gardening skills, and how she hopes to inspire visitors to the Australian Garden Show Sydney to turn their gardens into places for play.

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Meet: Ivy Singh, gentle warrior

Meet: Ivy Singh, gentle warrior

We recently enjoyed the very different Singapore experience of Bollywood Veggies, a ten-acre organic farm owned by Ivy Singh-Lim. Ivy is refreshingly outspoken – just check our her signage! – and named her farm for her Indian heritage and her love of singing and dancing. Linda Ross shared banana bread with the woman who calls herself Poison Ivy!

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Meet: Jeanne Villani, keen gardener and member of the Garden History Society

Meet: Jeanne Villani, keen gardener and member of the Garden History Society

Jeanne talks about her love for her tropical garden.

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Meet: Jenny Kee, artist

Meet: Jenny Kee, artist

Jenny Kee has always drawn inspiration from the Australian landscape. Her opal designs have been used by Chanel, her koala knits worn by Princess Di and her costumes were part of the parade at the Opening Ceremony of Sydney’s Olympic Games. Linda Ross met her to talk about her latest inspiration, the waratah.

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Meet: Jodie McGregor, florist

Libby talks to Jodie about her favourite flowers and her plans for her new garden.

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Meet: John Christie, General Manager, Cruden Farm

Meet: John Christie, General Manager, Cruden Farm

Cruden Farm is the wonderful garden of the late (and much-loved) Dame Elizabeth Murdoch. Sandra Ross spoke with John Christie about steering the garden into the future.

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Meet: John Siemon, project manager, PlantBank

PlantBank is a seed bank and scientific facility with a priority to conserve and understand plants, and take that knowledge to the community. The facility covers 3000 square metres, that’s the size of 2.5 Olympic swimming pools. Frozen seeds are kept in underground thermally efficient vaults.

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Meet: Justin Russell, market gardener

Meet: Justin Russell, market gardener

Justin Russell was a keen gardener and a writer about gardening until last November, when he and wife Kylie plunged into full-time market gardening. It's been a tough road, with severe drought.

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Meet: Karen Hall, garden creator

Meet: Karen Hall, garden creator

Wychwood is the magical garden created by Karen Hall and Peter Cooper. Though they are moving on, the magic of the garden has been captured in Karen’s words and Peter’s photographs, packaged in a handsome new book.

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Meet: Kerry Mitchell, plantaholic

Meet: Kerry Mitchell, plantaholic

Kerry Mitchell says she can’t resist a good flower and she now partly funds her passion by selling plants from her garden. Robin Powell caught up with her as she was preparing for the Collectors’ Plant Fair.

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Meet: Liz Gledhill, owner of Waverley Nursery and Garden Design

Liz's nursery specialises in hardy shrubs, perennials and ornamental grasses. Libby catches up with her.

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Meet: Lucy Sharman, Sydney's green wall advisor

Meet: Lucy Sharman, Sydney's green wall advisor

Last year the City of Sydney adopted the country’s first green wall and green roof policy. Robin Powell talked to the woman charged with making Sydney literally greener.

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Meet: Margaret Burchett, indoor plant and health expert

Meet: Margaret Burchett, indoor plant and health expert

Margaret talks about the possible health benefits of keeping indoor plants.

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Meet: Maria Hitchcock, correa collector

Meet: Maria Hitchcock, correa collector

We chat to Maria about her transition from 'Wattle Lady' to 'Correa Lady'.

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Meet: Marjan Medhat, NSW Government House florist

Meet: Marjan Medhat, NSW Government House florist

When Marjan Medhat needs something interesting for a flower arrangement she takes her secateurs into Sydney’s Botanic Gardens. We spoke to her about the challenges of creating flower arrangements for Government House.

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Meet: Mark Engall

Meet: Mark Engall

The nursery and garden industry has some great family stories. Here’s another one with a lemon twist.

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Meet: Matt Purbrick, village life enthusiast

Meet: Matt Purbrick, village life enthusiast

The happiest healthiest people in the world are those who live in simple agricultural communities where life is shared. It’s a way of life that Matt Purbrick and his partner Lentil enjoy in regional Victoria and extoll through their business, Grown and Gathered.

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Meet: Matthew Hayden, former cricketer, cook and organic gardener

Meet: Matthew Hayden, former cricketer, cook and organic gardener

After years of cricket, Matthew Hayden has decided to focus on his passions and dedicate time and energy to his garden.

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Meet: Melanie Boudar, Hawaii-based chocolatier

Meet: Melanie Boudar, Hawaii-based chocolatier

Hawaii-based chocolatier Melanie Boudar is going one better than making bean-to-bar chocolate – she’s growing the beans! It’s one way to preserve fine flavour cacao, which is threatened by commercial hybridisation.

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Meet: Meri Peach, biologist and artist

Meet: Meri Peach, biologist and artist

Meri talk plants and basket weaving!

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Meet: Michael Bates

Meet: Michael Bates

When Michael Bates took a holiday and garden study trip to Sri Lanka, it changed his life - and his garden.


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Meet: Myles Baldwin, designer, curator, Australian Garden Show Sydney

Meet: Myles Baldwin, designer, curator, Australian Garden Show Sydney

Garden designer and author Myles Baldwin always wondered why Sydney didn’t have a garden show that embraced our love of plants and gardens and took advantage of the city’s best locations. Now we do! Myles speaks about his newest passion - the Australian Garden Show Sydney

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Meet: Noel Hart, painter and sculptor of blown glass

Noel talks to Libby about drawing inspiration from nature.

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Meet: Penny Olsen, researcher and writer

Meet: Penny Olsen, researcher and writer

Penny Olsen spends most of her working life surrounded by the treasures of the National Library of Australia. It was there she came across a note that led to the beautiful ‘Collecting Ladies: Ferdinand Von Mueller and Women Botanical Artists’. We lured her out of the library for a chat.

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Meet: Peta Donaldson, garden designer

Meet: Peta Donaldson, garden designer

The Urban Gardens at the Australian Garden Show Sydney were spaces for new designers to show what they could do with a limited budget and compact, 5m x 5m spaces. Best of an exciting bunch was The Terrace by Peta Donaldson, which included water and fire in a wonderfully inviting space.

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Meet: Peta Trahar, co-founder, Collectors’ Plant Fair

Meet: Peta Trahar, co-founder, Collectors’ Plant Fair

This year marks the tenth Collectors’ Plant Fair, a fixture on garden-lovers’ calendars. Peta has been there in the hot seat from the beginning.

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Meet: Peter Fudge, garden designer and author

Meet: Peter Fudge, garden designer and author

Sydney landscaper Peter Fudge champions a classical style of garden and his gardens use form and foliage as the main elements rather than flowers. His new book reveals just how calming this green garden style is. Libby Cameron chats to him.

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Meet: Peter Gilmore, chef

Meet: Peter Gilmore, chef

Peter Gilmore is recognised as one of the most innovative chefs in the world. His restaurant, Quay, regularly features on lists of the world’s best, and he has recently taken his magic touch to Bennelong at the Sydney Opera House. Much of Peter’s inspiration comes from experiments with unusual edibles in his own garden.

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Meet: Philip Johnson, landscape designer

Meet: Philip Johnson, landscape designer

Sustainable landscape designer Philip Johnson generated rare garden-related headlines when his ‘Trailfinders Australian Garden’ took out the Best in Show award at the Chelsea Flower Show in 2013. What happened next?

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Meet: Richard Barley, CEO, Open Gardens Australia

Meet: Richard Barley, CEO, Open Gardens Australia

The mission of Open Gardens Australia is to promote the joys and benefits of gardens and gardening. Over 25 years garden-lovers have been inspired by what other gardeners have achieved, and more than $5 million has been raised for charity. There was more good news this year when Richard Barley received a prestigious international award. We asked him all about it.

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Meet: Richard Heathcote, director, Carrick Hill

Meet: Richard Heathcote, director, Carrick Hill

In spring of 2014 an unusual bloom will open in the gardening world – the world’s only Museum of Gardening. It will be housed in the grounds of historic Carrick Hill in Adelaide. Robin Powell spoke with Carrick Hill director Richard Heathcote.

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Meet: Sharon Drinkwater, Iris grower

Meet: Sharon Drinkwater, Iris grower

Irises are in the family of Sharon Drinkwater. Her father, Graeme Grosvenor, started Rainbow Ridge Nursery in Dural on the outskirts of Sydney in 1970. The nursery is Australia’s largest specialist iris and daylily nursery and has won multiple awards for its world-class hybrids. The nursery recently relocated to a picturesque paddock outside Orange and right now it’s overflowing with a rainbow of iris blooms.

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Meet: Sheridan Rogers, food writer

Meet: Sheridan Rogers, food writer

Sheridan Rogers is a food writer and broadcaster. Robin Powell talks to her about her work and her vegetable garden.

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Meet: Steve Warner

Meet: Steve Warner

Meet Steve Warner, joy giver. Steve Warner, landscape designer and owner of Outhouse Design, is a big believer in giving back. So when Fairy Sparkle needed help making a garden at the Sydney Children’s Hospital in Randwick guess who she asked!

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Meet: Steven Prowse, frangipani breeder

Meet: Steven Prowse, frangipani breeder

Robin chats to the expert on frangipanis.

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Meet: Stuart Pittendrigh

Meet: Stuart Pittendrigh

Barangaroo Point, Sydney’s great new harbourside park will soon open to the public. Before the ribbons are cut, meet the project’s horticultural consultant, Stuart Pittendrigh.

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Meet: Tamara Cannon, charity worker

Meet: Tamara Cannon, charity worker

Greenhouses are producing life-saving vegetables in the high-altitude desert villages of Ladakh, thanks to the Australian charity Lille Fro. Robin Powell spoke to its founder Tamara Cannon.

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Meet: Tim Entwisle, director, Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne

Meet: Tim Entwisle, director, Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne

Professor Tim Entwisle has returned to become the new director and chief executive of the Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne after a few years at the RBG Sydney and RBG Kew in London. Graham Ross caught up with him.

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Meet: Tim Heard, native bee expert

Meet: Tim Heard, native bee expert

Tim is an entomologist working in the area of using native insects to control weed populations. Here we talk to him about his passion for native bees.

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Meet: Tim Pickles, nurseryman

Meet Tim Pickles, nurseryman. Some of our most popular Garden Classes are those we run with the effusive Tim Pickles at Tim’s Garden Centre in Cambelltown. Now, meet the man behind the name.


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Meet: Tony Lennon, botanical sculptor

Meet: Tony Lennon, botanical sculptor

Tony Lennon shapes rock, tree fern or bone to create a home for an orchid, which wraps its roots into its host to form a living sculpture. We talked with him about his work.

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Meet: Tracey Deep, floral sculptor

Meet: Tracey Deep, floral sculptor

Tracey Deep uses nature as an inspiration for her living sculptures. Here we chat to her about her work and life.

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Mickey's garden

Mickey's garden

Mickey Robertson gardens at Glenmore House near Camden. Sounds like a scene out of Pride and Prejudice? Well yes, you do feel as though you've traveled back in time where women wear linen and the air smells clean. Winter, she says, is crisp mornings thawing to glorious blue-sky days. Early morning reveal traces of frost on cabbage and kale leaves; and sometimes, just sometimes, the paddocks blanketed in white. Evenings also have a rhythm all their own as woodsmoke trails through the valley. Here she shares glimpses of days in her winter garden.

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Roses at Red Cow Farm

Roses at Red Cow Farm

Seduced by the colour, forms and perfumes of roses, Ali Mentesh has already collected some 200 to adorn the garden rooms at Red Cow Farm. Can he choose a favourite?

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