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My Secret Garden [Hardcover]

Alan Titchmarsh
4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (94 customer reviews)
RRP: 25.00
Price: 17.00 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

25 Oct 2012

After moving from the Barleywood garden where he hosted BBC Gardeners' World for seven years, Alan Titchmarsh set up home in an old farmhouse a few miles down the road, and went about planting his own private eden away from the public eye. In this horticultural memoir Alan finally reveals all about this secret garden, explaining with his trademark warmth the personal stories behind its design and evolution. Accompanied by beautiful photographs taken by Jonathan Buckley throughout the eight years in which the garden has been made, My Secret Garden allows us access to all of the successes and failures of this diverse and ambitious project.

Comprising many different styles and spaces - from an acre of formal beds and ponds to wild flower meadows and a stunning winter garden - Alan's tales of development and cultivation will be applicable to all gardeners. With the plot encompassing fruit trees, a handsome greenhouse and wildlife-friendly plantings, gardeners of all styles and levels of expertise will find something to enjoy. Driven by Alan's infectious and informative style, My Secret Garden is a fascinating, amusing and inspiring book.


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 192 pages
  • Publisher: BBC Books (25 Oct 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1849900582
  • ISBN-13: 978-1849900584
  • Product Dimensions: 26.4 x 26.7 x 2.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (94 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 21,768 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Originally trained at Hertfordshire College of Horticulture and Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, Alan Titchmarsh is the author of over 40 books about gardening, including How to be a Gardener Book 1: Back to Basics, the fastest-selling of all time in the genre, and the bestselling The Kitchen Gardener: How to Grow Your Own Fruit and Veg. He writes for BBC Gardeners' World Magazine, and is gardening correspondent for the Daily Express and Sunday Express. He has presented Gardeners' World, the annual coverage of The Chelsea Flower Show and Nature of Britain, and has his own daily chatshow and presents his own show on Radio 2.

Product Description

Book Description

Stunning photography and personal stories behind the growth and development of Alan Titchmarsh's own private garden.

About the Author

Alan Titchmarsh is an author, television presenter and gardener. Originally trained at Hertfordshire College of Horticulture and The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, he is the author of more than 60 gardening books, writes regularly for Gardeners' World magazine and is gardening correspondent for the Sunday Express. He hosts his own seasonal daily chat show on ITV and has presented coverage of The Chelsea Flower Show for the BBC for 25 years.

He was awarded the MBE for services to horticulture and to broadcasting in 2000 and the Royal Horticultural Society's highest award, the Victoria Medal of Honour, in 2004.


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Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5 stars
4.9 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
51 of 53 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A garden for all seasons 28 Oct 2012
By Sue H TOP 1000 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Alan Titchmarsh shared every sod with the nation at his previous home `Barleywood' in the BBC Gardeners World programme, in 2002 he moved to a new property saying he had one more garden in him..... This has until now been his private family haven with the cameras kept away, he now shares with readers a largely pictorial glimpse of the new garden.

The 185 pages are divided into 4 seasonal sections. In these Alan describes the layout of his 4 acre the garden, very much of it wild flower meadow, but also with more formal beds and borders. Alan's garden notes are written in his familiar down to earth style, he describes himself as a gardener who designs a bit rather than a garden designer.

The book has a little of every thing, whilst Alan mentions his family briefly (the book is dedicated to his new grandson Hugo) he doesn't say a lot about his private life, although it was nice to see that Spud the cat after 15 years is still going strong. Nor is this a book with detailed gardening techniques. Alan describes events like Chelsea and designers which have inspired him, and the artists whose sculptures find a place in his plot. He admits the ducks prefer his very elegant ball water feature over the wild life pond he has created for them, for former which as a result has to be cleaned once a fortnight to stay pristine. He describes that plants that have done well and those which have not. Many of the are common garden plants, not some thing only found in obscure national collections, latin names are given but what other horticulturalist will describe his Chestnut as the conker tree !

Alan's comments are interesting if a little repetitive in places as a plant or scheme is described repeatedly in each of the seasonal sections.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My wished for Secret Garden 28 Nov 2012
By Jude
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
What a fabuolous book this is, the photography is amazing and the knowledge along with the witty remarks make it a delightful read. A definite on any garden lovers bookshelf. This book has given me so much pleasure and ideaas to follow.My Secret Garden
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful but informative... 6 Dec 2012
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Loved the photographs and the chatty style of Alan Titchmarsh. This book is a sheer pleasure with obviously immense detail regarding this his own created garden in Hampshire.

The garden is certainly an achievement of which he is proud and gives us the chance to see something which has never been seen publicly before. Titchmarsh's style is personal and he includes anecdotes of his past and his views, ideas and feelings which is rare in this sort of book. Loved it!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A sneaky peek into his garden 3 Dec 2012
Format:Hardcover
I bought this book after reading a review of it on a blog I follow by wellywoman. I was a little unsure if it would be for me and although I had read a few reviews on here that were all really positive, I hit the gardening blogs to see what they were saying about it. Sometimes I find it useful to hear different points of view.

I would say that the photos are really attractive, but the best part for me was the sneaky peek into his Garden. I know I could have had a quick look in the bookshop that I bought it from, to say 'ah that's what it looks like', but the visuals are strong. It's more a 'coffee book' type of book rather than any kind of 'how to'. Which isn't a criticism, he has written so many 'how to' this is aiming at a different market.

If you are not a fan of Mr T. then this book probably doesn't give you much, but if you are, or you know someone who is, especially if they like a good look in other people's gardens then it is definately worth a look!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A book to drool over 7 April 2013
By Cathy
Format:Hardcover
This is a beautiful peek at Mr Ts awesome garden. A gentle read - he tells you about the mistakes he's made, the challenges and the hardwork undertaken by him and his team. Refreshingly honest and informative too. Of course the main attraction to this book was the photos! Superb and show a truly magnificent garden off beautifully. Loved it and keep going back to it as I progress thru my own one acre redevelopment to keep motivated!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Should have been one for the Christmas stocking, but being curious I couldn't wait, so treated myself early.
So glad I did, what a lovely read, and great inspiration while it was raining outside.
I was surprised what a formal style Alan has now. Not entirely my taste, especially the dolphin pool!, but interesting never the less.
I would have liked the design plan at the back to have been clearer. Maybe scale would have helped. And Alan, where are your vegetables?.... confined to the corner, and not pictured..... don't let Monty know!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
By Lesley
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
The photos show the transformation very well as they have been taken over several years and the narrative helps the reader understand the problems with the site but also why certain choices were made. I love formal gardens so this book has lots of ideas for me to "borrow" for my new garden
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful Photography 3 Jan 2013
Format:Hardcover
I was given this book for Christmas. The book is a pleasure to read, being vintage Alan Titchmarsh's chatty style, but what really made it for me are the photographs by Jonathan Buckley. To my eyes they are well composed, the lighting is great, depth of field spot on, and the tones aren't too vivid and so look natural to me. This is a great deal harder to achieve than is apparent in the pages and is a testament to Mr Buckley's skill. Being in the garden at the right time for the light, let alone anything else, takes a lot of hard work and early rising. One or two of the smaller photographs didn't quite work for me because I don't like it when flowers are cut from the image on one side when there is room for them on the other, unless that crop adds to the overall composition, but the majority of the images are lovely, inspiring and capture the mood and spirit of the place. Particular favourites are the nerines in the courtyard (but that might just be plant-envy on my part) and the autumn double spread, where I think the lighting is particularly good. The greenhouse just sent me green.

I must confess that I have wondered what Alan Titchmarsh's new garden is like and now I know. I think we are privileged to have this glimpse into what was intended to be a very private space.

The problem with this sort of book is it provokes feelings of discontent at my own garden, which is small and shady. I'd love to plant an orchard with a wildflower sward, bounded by a native hedgerow, and have room for all the plants I have fallen in love with. It's the sort of thing I say, "When I'm rich and famous I will..." but time is running out, and nowadays I seem to be more wedded to the computer than I do to my garden. I can barely cope with what I have, so why do I want more? Because of books like this.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Its a great present.
Published 4 days ago by Rebecca
5.0 out of 5 stars Titchmarsh at his best
Lovely, lovely book. Was a treat for myself. Was v pleased with it. The sort of book you can look at again and again.
Published 1 month ago by Neeze
5.0 out of 5 stars Fabulous Book
Great to see his new garden. Loads of ideas and just a great book to have and look at.
Pictures are great.
Published 3 months ago by helen vincent
5.0 out of 5 stars A great book to value and study
A ready great book to own. Photos excellent and the reader is taken into this delightful designed garden by Alan. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Rodja NZ
5.0 out of 5 stars A book of Sheer indulgence with the most beautiful photographs......
I was bought this book as an early easter gift from my husband after spotting it on a modern country living blog and
WOW! Read more
Published 5 months ago by Zozie
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful
Beautiful - book and garden.
Very interested and pleasant writing along with good pictures, many times showing the same place over seasonal change.
Published 7 months ago by Blejka
5.0 out of 5 stars My Secret Garden
Although I'm only half through this book, I am enjoying it immensely . Really good book for relaxing with in the conservatory
on a cold sunny day.
Published 7 months ago by Mrs. Lena Newlands
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect present
I bought this for my Grandad, he loves it. It's quite big in size but with full page photos throughout the season, it's really lovely.
Published 8 months ago by Flicker
4.0 out of 5 stars Superb book
There are not many chances to get a peek into the private gardens of the gardening gods. This is one of them. If you haven't got it then add it to your amazon wish list now
Published 9 months ago by Mr. Clive Edwards
5.0 out of 5 stars What pleases Alan
An insight into what pleases Alan Titchmarsh. His likes and dislikes and what he has done to make it (and his wife's) personal garden. Read more
Published 9 months ago by jollie .j
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