Free Talks at The Garden Show at Firle Place 2017

Woodland Trust

    • 12.15pm Friday & Saturday in The Entertainment & Talk Tent in Firle Gardens
    • “ Native Woods & Trees” with Garfield Kennedy
    •  After the Talk ,Tree planting in The Walled Garden, kindly donated by Sussex Fruit Trees

Our vision is a UK rich in woods and trees, enjoyed and valued by everyone. We aim to create new native woodland with the help of communities, schools, organisations and individuals. We try to protect our precious ancient woods, restore the ones that are damaged and fight for those under threat. We do this by inspiring people up and down the country to visit woods, plant trees, and enjoy the many benefits that woodland has to offer

Firle Place Park

    • 12.15pm Sunday in The Entertainment & Talk Tent in Firle Gardens
    • “The past, the present & the future” with Lord Gage & Alastair Deighton the Estate Manager

The Firle Estate sits in the heart of the South Downs National Park and just 60 miles from the centre of London. Incorporating several villages and farms spread over rolling hills, Firle is a thriving rural community set in one of the most picturesque parts of the United Kingdom. Firle Place is an outstanding privately owned country house in Sussex that dates from the time of Henry VIII but was substantially remodelled in the 18th Century. The house, gardens and notable collection of works of art and porcelain are of national importance.

Ben Cross

    • Sunday 2pm in The Plant Doctors Tent in Firle Gardens
    • “British Alstroemeria & The UK Cut-Flower Industry”

Ben Cross from Crosslands Flower Nursery, a 4th generation horticulturalist based in Walberton near Arundel, West Sussex. Ben is a tireless campaigner for British Flowers.

Ben studied and worked in marine science and oceanography before returning to tend more than thirty different varieties of alstroemerias under 3 acres of glass all year round. 30 years ago there were lots of similar nurseries growing cut flowers all over the UK but the trend for importing cut flowers grown in Kenya, Colombia and Ecuador has sadly led to their demise. Ben’s nursery tours and talks are popular with flower clubs and horticultural societies who flock to see one of the few surviving old style horticultural establishments. ‘I feel very passionate about keeping the nursery going. It is a lifestyle like farming, not a job’ says Ben with heartfelt passion.


Daily ‘Plant Doctor’ sessions with gardening correspondents, Val & Steve Bradley – Find them in the PLANT DOCTOR TENT next to the information tent in Firle Gardens. Bring your ailing plants along; guaranteed to solve all your gardening problems! Note from the Garden Show organisers: ’there is nothing that these two experts don’t know about gardening!’

Val and Steve are busy rewriting the famous Gardening Expert books first made popular by Dr David Hessayon. Come and talk to them about it!

Steve Bradley

Steve Bradley grew up on a (mainly) rose nursery and is now a freelance garden writer and broadcaster. He studied horticulture at Writtle, Cannington and Pershore Colleges, achieving the RHS Master of Horticulture Diploma. In the early 1990s he appeared on two television series Plant Life and Garden Doctors, as a presenter on three official Chelsea Flower Show videos and made videos specialising in Propagation and Nursery Stock.

He currently appears almost every weekend on BBC local radio in Kent, Surrey/Sussex and Essex, answering live phone-in questions. He has written around 45 books and his most recent work is the revision of the famous Grafter’s Handbook With Val, his wife, he wrote the support material for the Ground Force TV series and in October 2002 they joined Peter Seabrook as gardening correspondents for the Sun newspaper. As a magazine contributor he is behind the ‘Masterclass’ series in Gardens Monthly, and writes specialist articles for the RHS journal and BBC Gardeners World Magazine.

Val Bradley

Val Bradley has been gardening since she could hold a trowel but only began her career in horticulture after 3 years in the Civil service. Following her horticultural training at Askham Bryan College she worked in garden centres and nurseries including RHS Wisley. She has taught at horticultural college covering topics such as propagation; pruning; plant nomenclature; house plants; basic garden design; fruit and vegetable gardening. She has also written or co-written 12 books on various aspects of gardening including The Complete Guide to Houseplants and Step by Step Town Gardens. She has written numerous magazine articles , answered live phone-in questions on local BBC radio and was the resident expert on Gardens Monthly website forum for two years. Since 2002 she has joined her husband Steve and Peter Seabrook as gardening correspondents for The Sun newspaper, answering hundreds of readers’ letters.

The Garden Show at Firle
20 – 22 April 2018

The Garden Show at Stansted
8 – 10 June 2018

The Garden Show at Loseley
27 – 29 July 2018