Matthew Wilson, John Wyer and photographer Clive Nichols join line up for next Society of Garden Designers conference

The Society of Garden Designers has lined up speakers for its spring conference focusing on garden maintenance - including a Slade School-trained sculptor, photographer and TV broadcaster.

The conference, called Maintaining the Vision, will look at everything that happens to a garden after it has been built and planted – for better or worse," said the society.

"A major theme is just how early in the design process designers should address maintenance. "Gardens are not static forms. From the start of each commission designers have to project forwards to understand how a design will develop and age. The alternative is designed gardens that lose their looks early, sliding into disordered decay.

"We can't control things such as the weather and client neglect but we can avoid much of the negative impact such forces can have on our designs by being fully aware in our decision making, and by briefing our clients."

Speakers at the event on Saturday 27 April at Imperial college London include John Wyer, co-founder of Bowles & Wyer, which has made its name creating award-winning gardens and landscape projects.

Garden designer, writer and broadcaster Matthew Wilson specialises in environmentally sensitive gardening. He worked for the RHS for 10 years, running gardens at Hyde Hall and Harlow Carr. He now runs Clifton Nurseries, one of London's oldest gardening businesses.

Jake Hobson studied sculpture at the Slade in London before his life as a pruner began in Japan. Back in England he worked at Architectural Plants in Sussex before setting up Niwaki, selling Japanese pruning tools and tripod ladders.

Clive Nichols is regarded as one of the world's finest flower and garden photographers. For the past 25 years his photographs have appeared in countless publications throughout the world and he is in constant demand as a lecturer and teacher.


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