Gardens

‘Lovely’ is the word that best sums up the National Garden Scheme

Why the National Garden Scheme beats the Chelsea Flower Show hands down

28 July 2018 9:00 am

Isabel Hardman on the joys of nosying around other people’s flower beds

Take it outside

17 June 2017 9:00 am

See in the summer with stylish al-fresco dining

Why won’t the RSPB join my war on squirrels?

22 October 2016 9:00 am

The week began badly when I spotted three grey squirrels gathering beechnuts in our arboretum. During our time at our…

The Capability Brown-landscaped garden at Prior Park, near Bath, and the first know image of a railway line, from a drawing by Anthony Walker, 1750

Capability Brown is Britain's most influential – and pernicious – artist

20 August 2016 9:00 am

In a piece of light verse from the 1770s ‘Dame Nature’ — out strolling ‘one bright day’ — bumps into…

Ruins and romance (Monty Don not included)

Meeting Monty Don in the world’s most romantic garden

23 July 2016 9:00 am

I’ve just been given a personal tour of Ninfa by Monty Don. True, I had to share the thinking woman’s…

Cliveden is now a museum of snobbery

9 July 2016 9:00 am

Cliveden is a good review for a divided country and I have waited, not too long, for it to feel…

Capability and mustard: Gatton Park

A Capability Brown jewel hiding just outside the M25

18 June 2016 9:00 am

Gatton Park is probably Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown’s least famous landscape. It is tucked away near Reigate Hill, just beyond the…

An early folly: Rushton Triangular Lodge, Northamptonshire, built in 1597 by Sir Thomas Tresham as a symbol of the Holy Trinity

Let’s celebrate follies – England’s most distinctive contribution to world architecture

11 June 2016 9:00 am

Ruined castles, altars, temples of virtue, alcoves, labyrinths, pagodas: Stephen Bayley celebrates a peculiarly English obsession

‘Nympheas (Waterlilies)’, 1914–15, by Claude Monet

The link between herbaceous borders and the avant-garde

30 January 2016 9:00 am

Philip Larkin once remarked that Art Tatum, a jazz musician given to ornate, multi-noted flourishes on the keyboard, reminded him…

'Lion Hunt', 1861, by Eugène Delacroix

Galleries are getting bigger - but is there enough good art to put in them?

2 January 2016 9:00 am

Martin Gayford recommends the exhibitions to see — and to avoid — over the coming year

The plot to save Goldsmith’s Close Allotments

2 January 2016 9:00 am

Since turning 50 I have become a gardening enthusiast. It started with tomatoes, then spread to raspberries and last year…

Prue Leith’s diary: When did weddings stop being for parents?

8 August 2015 9:00 am

My Cambodian daughter and her husband have just got married again. Wedding One was a Buddhist affair in our drawing…

‘The Wilderness, Hartwell House, Buckinghamshire’ by Balthasar Nebot

Why is the garden absent in English painting?

8 August 2015 9:00 am

One of the default settings of garden journalists is the adjective ‘painterly’ — applied to careful colour harmonies within a…

What to do with a squirrel (without getting prosecuted)

21 March 2015 9:00 am

Squirrels have much to teach us – once they’ve finished eating our nuts

Rus in urbe

2 June 2012 7:00 pm

One of the pleasures of my week is walking across St James’s Square. The slightly furtive sense of trespassing as…

Bella vistas

9 July 2011 12:00 am

Many moons ago when I went to Sissinghurst to ask Nigel Nicolson (late of this parish) if I could write about his mother, Vita Sackville-West, he raised his hands, and eyebrows, in horror, ‘Oh! Not another book about my mother!’ These two titles on Italian gardens may provoke a similar reaction, for there has been a recent run of revisiting via Charles Latham’s vintage Country Life photographs, Edith Wharton’s Edwardian musings and Georgina Masson’s 1961 classic, now revived.

Lancelot of the lake

23 April 2011 12:00 am

Tom Stoppard’s Arcadia offers two contrasting views on a ‘Capability’ Brown landscape at the imagined Sidley Park.

Our avian friends

29 January 2011 12:00 am

Several new facts have rocked me back on my heels recently: Alastair Cook garnered more runs at the Gabba in Brisbane than Don Bradman; there are 100,000 miles of blood vessels in your brain; more people in this country can recognise Simon Cowell than Pope Benedict; and we spend as much annually on ‘wild bird care’ — £200 million — as we do on peat and potting composts, and rather more than on fertilisers.

Gardens: Beguiled by olive trees

18 December 2010 12:00 am

Fashion may be Folly’s child, but that never stopped gardeners, when the urge was on them, from planting something à la mode.

Pretty maids all in a row

11 December 2010 12:00 am

With one notable exception, the best horticultural books this year are written by women. Mary Keen explores the gender divide in gardening

Gather ye roses

20 November 2010 12:00 am

Can there be many spare bedrooms in the country that do not have at least one, and probably four, prints of Redouté rose engravings hanging on the walls? I know ours does.

French foray

16 October 2010 12:00 am

One surefire sign of maturity is the acceptance that you have friends who are more talented than you are.