(Photo: David Atherton)
The sheltered walled gardens at Court House, East Quantoxhead,
where I worked for two years, allow much more lavish growth than windswept
Lilstock. I designed this border to make use of self-seeders and annuals, as
well as long-lived perennials.
Wind-shaped tree above Lilstock
otherwise acknowledged, all photographs are the copyright of R.A.FitzGerald.
All rights reserved
You have come to
Lilstock on the West Somerset coast, to a former small
independent nursery called Beggars Roost Plants. The cottage and garden are
close to the cliffs of the Bristol Channel, so wind is the governing condition. The ground consists of thin clay soils over lias limestone, and the site is
south-facing and exposed.
Running a nursery
there was an education! Following over 20 years working in botanical
conservation, it added to my ecological knowledge, teaching me how to help
plants grow their best, whether in the wild or in the kinder habitat of a garden
. My interests often favour the unusual, but I’m also committed to the principle
of growing good garden plants – ‘good doers’ and loyal friends. The West Country
is also full of plants with local historic associations, so I learned where to
My first book (published January 2012) brings in many of my
memories and experiences.
Click here for book details
Now I help others
to get the best results from their West Country
gardens, by consultation, by giving talks, and by finding the right plants for