Fergus Garrett Lecture
Fergus Garrett (right) with Horticultural Chairman Valerie Briselden and Tony Briselden
St. Paul’s Parish Room was filled to capacity to hear Chipperfield Horticultural Society’s Spring Lecture given on 25 April by Fergus Garrett who since 1992 has been the Head Gardener at Great Dixter, home of the late Christopher Lloyd. Fergus talked about how Nathaniel Lloyd had purchased a tumbledown medieval farmhouse in 1910. With the help of the famous architect, Edwin Lutyens, restored the house and extended it to become the very fine building it is today. Edwin and Nathaniel went on to develop the garden into a series of ‘rooms’. Christopher, the youngest of six children, was born in 1921 and from an early age became devoted to creating the world famous gardens that had been started by his father and his mother Daisy. Christopher was to become one of the country’s great garden authors and his book, ‘The Well Tempered Garden’ is considered a classic. Fergus met Christopher during the 1980′s and was eventually persuaded by Christopher to become his head gardener and Fergus in his talk told how the two would work together to create a wealth of colour and innovative planting to produce a continuity of interest in the garden for twelve months of the year. The talk was illustrated by a large number of wonderful pictures and at the close Fergus was bombarded by questions from the enthusiastic audience. A fount of knowledge, Fergus gave a superb talk and his energy was an inspiration, especially when he remarked that he would often start work as early as 5am and still be at work well into the evening.