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Photo: Jason Ingram

Garden Day

Sat 21 Sep 2019, 10 am – 5 pm

Somerset

Join us in celebrating Oudolf Field and the natural world this September and embrace the positive impact the outdoors can have on our imagination and well-being. 

We will host a series of garden-inspired talks in the Radić Pavilion throughout the day. A variety of stalls will offer cut flowers, plants and local produce in the Oudolf Field Rear Cloister.

11 am: Mike Glier on The Role of the Gardener

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Artist Mike Glier uses painting and drawing to explore topics of common interest. Masculinity, consumerism, and conflict were subjects for much of his early work and more recently he has focused on the human relationship with the environment. This talk, ‘The Role of the Gardener’, considers the occupation that is often centred on growth and productivity as opposed to specific identity. Glier has investigated this idea as a model for the evolution of contemporary culture and our response to our natural surroundings. 

‘My landscape projects are propelled by a number of things, including the love of paint and abstraction, but most importantly, by a desire to do my part to help make the changes in philosophy that are required if humanity is to create a sustainable future.’

1 pm: Saskia Marjoram: How can the energy of plants affect our wellbeing?

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Saskia Marjoram has been working with plants for her whole life, firstly as a professional gardener and then florist to HRH Prince of Wales and for the last 15 years as Director of Saskia’s Flower Essences. She has lived and worked for several years at a medicinal herb nursery and now works in the private garden of Iwan & Manuela Wirth.

Her insightful talk will pull on the knowledge and expertise she has gained over her career as a herbalist, exploring the energetic, emotional and physical healing properties of plants. 

“More and more as I delve deeper into how the plant world and humans interact I am humbled by their ability to heal us on all levels. It seems the more we abuse the planet the more the plants are showing up to counteract the wounds we create.”

Saskia will be showcasing her range of British flower essences and herbal remedies in the garden throughout the day where you can ask further questions about her work.

2 pm: Catherine Horwood: Beth Chatto, A Life with Plants

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Beth Chatto OBE VMH (27 June 1923 – 13 May 2018) was a British plantswoman, garden designer and author best known for creating the Beth Chatto Gardens near Elmstead Market, Essex. She was also known for writing several books on gardening for specific conditions, as well as lecturing throughout the United Kingdom, the United States, Canada, Australia, the Netherlands and Germany.

Some years before her death in May 2018, Beth Chatto authorised Catherine Horwood to write her biography, with exclusive access to her archive including her notebooks and diaries, never previously published. They bring Beth’s own distinctive and much-loved voice into the book. Most of the photographs, from Beth’s personal archives, have also never been seen in print before.

Catherine will be talking about the personal story behind Beth Chatto’s beliefs, the struggles and determination that brought her success and the challenges of writing a biography about one of horticulture’s most influential figures.

3 pm: Rory Dusoir: Passing Time in an Oudolf Garden

Rory Dusoir is an author, plantsman, and former gardener at Great Dixter House & Gardens. Dusoir will introduce his forthcoming publication, ‘Planting the Oudolf Gardens at Hauser & Wirth Somerset’, released ahead of Garden Day on 19 September. He will also discuss Piet Oudolf’s approach to seasonality, embracing the process of decay, and how this practice differs so radically from the traditional English gardening orthodoxy.

These are free events, but registering is essential as capacity is limited. 

5.30 pm: Following Garden Day, we have arranged a film screening of ‘Five Seasons: The Gardens of Piet Oudolf’ at the Hauser & Wirth Recital Hall at King’s Bruton School, with an introduction by writer and gardening editor, Caroline Donald.

Roth Bar & Grill will be open as usual, serving sustainable and seasonal produce from Durslade Farm and our Kitchen Garden.

Mike Glier has exhibited internationally at the ICA, London; Fruitmarket Gallery, Edinburgh; the Museum of Modern Art, New York; Gerald Peters Gallery, Santa Fe; and Krakow Witkin Gallery, Boston. The Drawing Center, NY; The Tyler Gallery, Temple University; and the Opalka Gallery, Sage Colleges, Albany, NY, have sponsored national touring exhibitions of his work in the U.S. He is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship in painting and the Alexander Falck Class of 1899 Professor of Art at Williams College, Williamstown, Massachusetts. As the artist-in-residence at Hauser & Wirth Somerset for 2019 – 2020, Glier will be studying Oudolf Field and the Somerset landscape to capture the seasonal changes of colour and motif.

Saskia’s Flower Essences are infused with British wild flowers, trees and garden flowers to create energetically powerful flower essences. Flower essences contain the unique vibrational energy of the plant they came from. They help shift a whole range of emotional states and behaviours and can therefore help with a whole host of different issues including anger, confidence, depression, grief and self-worth. They work deeply and gently to bring positive and effective changes, bringing awareness and shifting patterns enabling one to heal in a safe, natural and simple way. 

Dr Catherine Horwood is a social historian with a passion for plants and gardens. Her book ‘Gardening Women: Their Stories from 1600 to the Present’ (Virago, 2010) was enthusiastically received. ‘Horwood strikes gold,’ said The Guardian. It is rich, full and lasting. Neither gardens nor women will seem quite the same again,’ said The Times. Catherine’s other books include ‘Rose’ (Reaktion, 2018), a cultural history of the world’s favourite flower, and ‘Potted History. The Story of Plants in the Home’ (Frances Lincoln, 2007). Her blog has a worldwide following. She lives in London where she has a south-facing rooftop garden with distant views across the capital.

Rory Dusoir decided to pursue a career in horticulture while studying for a classics degree at Balliol College, Oxford. He worked at Great Dixter as assistant head gardener prior to undertaking the prestigious Kew Diploma. He has also been head gardener at Howe Mill in Wiltshire and most recently Stud House in Kingston upon Thames. He has written on horticulture for the Daily Telegraph, RHS Garden Magazine and Gardens Illustrated, and has also contributed to two books; ‘Plant Users Handbook’ (2003) and ’Roses: A Celebration’ (2003). 

Caroline Donald is an author, writer and has been gardening editor of the Sunday Times since 2000, where she has regularly worked with, and interviewed, Piet Oudolf. Her book, ‘The Generous Gardener: Private Paradises Shared’ (2018) is a collection of interviews, published by Pimpernel Press.

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