- How did you get started?
I became interested in landscaping while at college studying art and the built environment. I was always more practically-minded rather than academically - I preferred more hands-on subjects. Although I did not do so well on the academic side, it definitely got me interested in landscaping. I enjoyed the creativity of art and the skill of things like bricklaying.
- What advice would you give to others starting out?
Look for what is on offer for young landscapers. There are different award schemes and scholarships that you can apply for - the Geoffrey Chalk Memorial Fund, which I received, for example. If you apply and do not get it you have not lost out. But if you are awarded something like this, publicity and knowledge also come hand in hand.
- What does your typical day involve?
I love my job because there is so much variety. A typical day though would be to create something that someone will enjoy for years to come - hopefully.
- What takes up most of your time?
Most of my time is probably spent using mortar - laying slabs or bricks.
- What is the best part of your job?
The chance to take part in something that is creative and gives people beautiful spaces to enjoy.
- And the worst?
Dealing with the worst of the British weather. I am definitely not someone who enjoys being out in the rain.
- How do you wind down after a hard day?
I spend a lot of my spare time training in mixed martial arts - not your usual way to wind down.
- What does the future hold?
I would one day like to compete at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show. I think you have always got to aim high if you want to achieve in your life and look for any hidden opportunities.
- Ryan Neveu will be blogging on his trip to explore horticulture in China, the Philippines and Taiwan. See his blog - Horticultural Adventures in Asia - at http://community.hortweek.com/blogs/ryanneveu/