29th January      Jo Hynes     Cylamen’

Jo, with her husband Tom,  owns Higher Cherubeer, Dolton, Winkleigh, a one and half acre gardenwith gravelled courtyard, raised beds, lawns, large herbaceous border, shady woodland and potager style kitchen garden with greenhouse.  The garden is open in the winter for the National Collection of Cyclamen, hellebores and over 400 species of snowdrops.  The garden is planted up to give interest throughout the year.

26th February     Nick Wray      ‘Micro-climates in the garden’

Nick Wray is the curator of the Botanic Garden at Bristol University where he has worked for more than 30 years.  In 2016 the RHS awarded Nick the RHS Associate of Honour for his distinguished service to horticulture.  A large part of Nick’s work centres on public education and outreach.  He has served at RHS shows, including Chelsea.  He is a member of the RHS Herbal Advisory Group, a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Horticulture and Fellow of the Linnaean Society of London.

26th March     Sue Minter      ‘The Healing Garden’

Sue Minter is a semi-retired professional horticulturalist and past president of the Chartered Institute of Horticulture.  She was supervisor of the Palm House at Kew in the 1980s, curator of the Chelsea Physic Garden in the 1990s and then Director of Horticulture of the Eden Project.  She is a trained historian and has authored several books including the Healing Garden: A Practical Guide for Physical and Emotional Well-being.  She has lived in the South West since 2001 and is on the South West committee of the Heritage Lottery Fund.

30th April     Lorna Howell     ‘Lukesland Gardens

Lorna’s family have owned Lukesland Gardens since 1930.  She and her husband John, moved to the house in 2004 and they now manage the 24 acre estate.  Her grandfather did a lot of renovation work and her parents did further planting.  Lorna continues that work.

28th May     Visit to Lukesland Gardens

Lukesland Gardens comprises 24 acres of woodland, streams, arboreta, rhododendrons, azaleas, magnolias, wild flowers and a kitchen garden.  The garden has a number of ‘Champion’ trees; at the last count there were 4 National champions, 4 English champions and 25 Devon champions.  During this visit many of the rhododendrons will still be in flower and the azaleas just coming into flower.  This is a perfect time to see the splendours of this garden. In 2018 the annual Dartmoor Society Award was presented to Lukesland Gardens for its excellence.

25th June     Roy Cheek     ‘Irresistible garden plants for butterflies’

Roy was a senior lecturer at Cannington College where he amassed 10,000 kinds of plants.  He used these to create new hybrids and produce award winning exhibits at the Chelsea Flower Show.  Roy is a horticultural advisor on the restoration of the Jekyll planting in the formal garden at Hestercombe.  He is vice-chair of two floral committees and a judge for Chelsea and other international shows.

30th July     Jeremy Wilson   ‘The scented garden’

Jeremy is owner of Strete Gate Camelias, Torquay.  The nursery is a family run business which was set up in the mid 80s and now has over 300 varieties of camelias.  The nursery is not open to the public so here is a chance to hear about the best camelias and have an opportunity to buy one.

August     No meeting

24th September      Peter Cantrill  ‘Preparing the garden for winter’

Peter is a well-known speaker in the area and is the owner of Dayspring Plants near Exeter Airport.  This is a wholesale nursery that specialises in herbaceous plants, ferns and grasses.  We will have the opportunity of buying plants at this meeting.

29th October     Dr Todd Gray  MBE ‘Elizabethan Gardens in Devon’

Dr Gray is a historian devoted to the heritage of Devon.  He is Research Fellow of the University of Exeter and Fellow of the Royal Historical Society.  He has regular appearances on local and national media and has written over 40 books on Devon. He was awarded an MBE in 2014 and last year he was awarded the Freedom of the City of Exeter joining an illustrious group that includes Nelson, the Duke of Wellington and Churchill.  To mark this event he was awarded a 3D replica of the East Gate of Exeter.

26th November    AGM followed by Gardening Question Time and Buffet