Ursula Buchan

A river of green topiary cascades down the terrace steps at West Dean. Cotoneaster horizontalis covers the wall on the right

Top topiary: the year’s best gardening books

17 November 2018 9:00 am

There are probably no more gifted professional gardeners in England than Jim Buckland and Sarah Wain, husband and wife and…

The real gardeners’ questions answered

5 December 2015 9:00 am

Why is it that gardening in the public prints is so often treated as a fluffy subject for fluffy people?…

Perfectly stacked wood, Norwegian-style

Top tips for gardeners — from stroking seedlings to stacking logs

21 November 2015 9:00 am

I spent the summer of 1976 working as a trainee gardener at the Arboretum Kalmthout in Belgium. My employer was…

The many lives of John Buchan

10 October 2015 9:00 am

Up the stairs with flying feet, You would burst upon us, cheering Wellington’s funereal street. Fresh as paint, though you’d…

Acer palmatum ‘Osakasuki’, the Japanese maple

There is good in every tree, says Thomas Pakenham — even the sycamore

26 September 2015 8:00 am

I have never written much about the one-acre shaw of native trees I planted in 1994, even though it is…

Primula auricula

How 18th-century gardeners ordered their plants after a great storm, a terrible drought and ‘a little ice age’

23 May 2015 9:00 am

I hesitate ever to criticise an author for the inappropriateness of a book’s title, since it’s more likely the fault…

Castle Cottage in Near Sawrey, Cumbria, where Beatrix Potter lived after her marriage to William Heelis

Behind (almost) every great writer is a great garden

8 November 2014 9:00 am

It is a truism that writers of all kinds often find inspiration and solace in their gardens, as well as…

‘At the Cottage Door’, by Myles Birket Foster (1825–99)

Beauty in beastly surroundings

26 April 2014 9:00 am

The vast majority of books written about British gardens and their histories are concerned with large ones, made and maintained,…

The elegant stems of the hornbeam allow for views down into the five garden compartments on the south side of the long water garden at Temple Guiting by Jinny Blom. (From The New English Garden by Tim Richardson)

The most important gardening book of the year

16 November 2013 9:00 am

I’ll own up at once. Tim Richardson and Andrew Lawson, the author and photographer of The New English Garden (Frances…