The couple’s house in Nassenheide, Pomerania, c.1898
©Family collection, Ann Hardham

Thorn amid the roses in a ‘German garden’

A look at the reality behind the 1898 novel — and how an imaginary invitation might be received today

A swimmer at King’s Cross Pond Club
©John Sturrock

Swimming pools with plants, not chemicals

Naturally purified freshwater ponds can be good for swimmers, the environment — and save money

Roses at Château du Rivau in the Loire Valley, France
©Naomi Slade

French garden that’s made to odour

At the Château du Rivau in the Loire, roses are chosen for their scent, not colour

The garden of Abbaye de Pierredon, which has celebrated its 800th anniversary

Lavender in a new light

Travelling often helps me see my flowerbeds with fresh eyes — from French roundabouts to a superb garden in Provence

‘Dirty Corner’ (2011-2015), by Anish Kapoor, at Versailles
©Fabrice Seixas/Tadzio

Le Nôtre and Kapoor’s ‘Dirty Corner’

The artist’s Versailles show caps a bad year for the greatest of landscape gardeners

Mulgrave castle
©Matthew Wilson

Mulgrave, king of the landscaped castles

The private estate is keeping many old horticultural innovations alive

Bright fuchsia

The RHS’s Hampton Court flower show is a good place to pick up some autumn flowers

Illustration shows the healing power of garden
©James Fryer

The healing power of gardens

The health benefits of green space are profound

Rosa hugonis
©David Austen

Great haul of China

The legacy of French Catholic missionaries to the country is the deluge of beautiful flowers they brought back

Engravings left by elm bark beetles
©Philip Scalia/Alamy

Arboreal apocalypse or anthropomorphic angst?

Why wildwoods will survive disease without our misguided efforts to help them

Twisted oaks and tales of the pygmy forest

The Tolkienesque Wistman’s Wood is unlike any ‘normal’ woodland

Heavenly year starts to bed in

English gardeners are enjoying 2015 with ideal conditions for flowers like irises and deutzias

Time for tea?

David Austin’s heavily petalled roses have led the pack since the 1970s, but hybrid teas still have a place

How core skills boosted Kent’s apple yield

The work of a horticultural research institute has helped maintain the buoyancy of the domestic apple industry

Rooted in the past: plants within ruins

Nature plays a vital role in the life of historic buildings, from Rome’s Colosseum to derelict factories in Yorkshire

Flowers as works of art? Iris my case

Two exhibits at Chelsea showcased the legacy of an English painter and the expertise of a French nursery

Botanical drawings from the 1620s

Illustrations in the Paper Museum series reveal the first use of a microscope to study plants close-up

Stand-outs from the crowd at Chelsea 2015

Growers at this year’s flower show offered plenty of inspiration for urban gardeners, from cypripediums to violas

The heiress who left a horticultural legacy

The life and work of a little-known but remarkably green-fingered noblewoman are celebrated in a new book

Show garden highlights at Chelsea 2015

Matthew Keightley’s Lesotho-inspired garden, Matthew Wilson’s curvy creation, and an excess of hard surfacing

Great and the good on display at Chelsea

Top Tories mingle with finance chiefs at pre-launch event

From a grower’s perspective

The road to flower show can be rocky, characterised by weather worries and timing issues

Older designers break new ground

Cleve West on why we should celebrate mature career changers who have switched to garden design

New look for London museum

Redesign of grounds at the Natural History Museum will show how urban green spaces can aid wellbeing

The flowers and the glory

Jinny Blom picks out her all-time top 10 flowering plants, from wisteria to magnolia

Call to weed out the macho

More female designers are needed to focus on the show’s human element, says Sarah Eberle

Must-have plants and products

From giant apple sculptures and lightweight secateurs to birdbaths, compost and watering cans

Hot tickets at Chelsea Flower Show

Gardens and plants to look out for, from pineapple guava hedges to a ‘kaleidoscope’ of dahlias

Essential pruning tools for any gardener

Using the right products can make light work of an important, if unglamorous, task

Gardeners who grew their own expertise

Many great naturalists and plant breeders succeeded without any formal training

The hills are alive... in Innisfree

This living work of art in New York State retains its magic, 15 years on

Britain’s underwater gardens

A ‘marine protected area’ begins a conservation pledge by the Tories

The shrub of the matter

A round-up of the best varieties of magnolia, camellia, prunus, forsythia, daphne and viburnum

A guide to the best glasshouses

A range of models and products open up the possibilities for gardeners in temperate climates

The small veg with a big taste

Mini-carrots, dwarf runner beans and micro cherry tomatoes are perfect for container gardens — and discerning chefs

The banker behind Exbury’s natural wealth

The banker’s grand endeavour is in full bloom at the estate in Hampshire

The art of painting paradise

New exhibition in London explores how gardens have been represented by artists since the 16th century

Roses with altitude: Ecuador’s growth story

The country is one of the world’s biggest flower exporters, but developments elsewhere could prune its ambitions

Easter is the time to go to ground

This weekend offers the perfect opportunity to repair lawns, nurture roots and plant bulbs for summer

The poison garden: plants as weapons

Torre Abbey, near the writer’s home in Devon, explores the idea of plants as weapons


william wallis

Illustration by Luis Grañena of a globe showing the African continent ©Luis Grañena Here comes Africa

Olusegun Obasanjo

©Shonagh Rae My African utopia