Exbury: The First 100 Years and Managing a Unique Plant Collection in the 21st Century

The Cornwall Garden Society’s (CGS) February lectures will be delivered by Tom Clarke who is the Head Gardener at Exbury Gardens in Hampshire.

Tom wished to pursue an outdoor career from an early age and, upon leaving school, he studied as an apprentice with the National Trust at Calke Abbey in Derbyshire where he helped to restore a Victorian walled garden.

Following employment at other historic settings, Tom joined the garden team at National Trust Trelissick. There, he encountered many of the plants that are now a major feature of his working life – rhododendrons, camellias and magnolias – and he has travelled to the Himalayas three times to witness them growing in the wild, with the support of the CGS.

Created just over 100 years ago in the golden age of woodland gardening, Exbury spans over 200 acres in the New Forest and is home to one of the greatest woody plant collections in the UK.

Exbury: The First 100 Years will be his subject on Tuesday 8th February at 7.30pm at The Alverton in Truro whilst Managing a Unique Plant Collection in the 21st Century will be his theme on Wednesday 9th February at 2.30pm at St Mellion International Resort in Saltash.

These lectures are free for CGS members. Non-members are welcome to attend to find out more about the Society and donations are gratefully received.

The CGS is a charity that exists to encourage and improve the science, art and practice of horticulture in all its branches; share knowledge about gardening and Cornwall’s rich garden heritage, and conserve the county’s natural environment. The Society is affiliated to the RHS and its Patron is HRH The Prince of Wales.

For further information about the CGS, please visit cornwallgardensociety.org.uk, follow @CwllGardenSoc on Twitter and @CornwallGardenSociety on Instagram, or like www.facebook.com/cornwallgardensociety

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Upcoming Events

  • Day Trip by Coach to Kia-Ora Farm and Gardens, Cullompton and National Trust Killerton, Broadclyst

    Kia-Ora Farm’s peaceful ten-acre garden encompasses lawns, lakes and ponds, which, together with extensively-planted borders, a bog garden and mature trees, provide an environment in which nature thrives.

    Famous for its rare trees and shrubs, the garden at National Trust Killerton provides year-round interest. Beside the house, The Admiral’s Lawn is bordered by tender perennials whilst the Terrace Garden includes herbaceous flowering beds and obelisks for annual climbers. In the formal garden, a memorial to Sir Thomas Acland marks his favourite spot overlooking the Devonshire countryside.

    The booking form is available to download here or in hard copy, upon request, from the organiser.

  • Self-drive Visit to Trebartha, near Launceston

    We last enjoyed a visit to Trebartha in 2015 when many changes had taken place, such as the installation of a new hydro-electric plant and the large-scale removal of Rhododendron ponticum. Several years later and the area is gloriously settled. 

    Trebartha is located on the eastern side of Bodmin Moor and its gardens offer both natural and man-made features together with many fine views. Spanning 18 hectares, there is plenty to explore. This will be a full day visit so do bring a picnic lunch!

    Our group will divide into two for different guided walks in the morning and afternoon to view the ponds, cascades and terraces, and we shall stop to admire the beautifully-designed garden at Lemarne that is situated within the estate, en route. 

    The booking form is available to download here or in hard copy, upon request, from the organiser.