Simply the best way to learn about garden design

I can’t think of a more enjoyable – or effective – way to learn about garden design than to do so on the road, visiting exemplary gardens with a group of like-minded people.

That’s why I’ve cooked up this idea of Travelling Masterclasses.  They don’t assume you’re a master.  They’re created in order to assist in making you a master!  Each tour focusses on a particular aspect of garden design, and takes you to the best location – in the world! – to learn about it.

It may be surprising, then, to see that a course looking at principles of home garden design should choose New Zealand as the very best place to examine the subject.  But I’m completely blown away by the quality and range of gardens there, covering super-formal, geometrically driven gardens through to magical, meandering plant-driven design.  I honestly can’t think of any other location that offers the opportunity for such a design-intensive in comfortably drivable distance, meeting owners who have created and maintain these gardens themselves, or with little help.

Ash and I hit the road last summer to hunt down the most informative and inspiring of these gardens, and shot a range of videos that give you a glimpse into their quality and individuality.  If you haven’t already, take a look at a few (links below). And then consider joining us.

Whether you’re looking for ideas or enthusiasm for your own garden project, or are simply attracted to advancing your garden appreciation, I can guarantee that joining this Travelling Masterclass will totally transform the way you think about garden design.

The best of New Zealand’s Home Gardens…

There’s Barewood, one of my favourite English Country Gardens on this side of the planet.

And Winterhome, which confounds your perceptions of its size with clever design and breathtaking views. 

You can also revisit some of my recent blog entries:

Robyn Kilty’s fabulously tiny Christchurch Garden

A lifetime of exemplary achievement at Trott’s Garden

The vision and determination of Penny Zino at Flaxmere

CLICK HERE to see the full itinerary of the up-coming New Zealand Travelling Masterclass from the 16th – 23rd November. But be quick, spots are limited, and registrations for this tour will close on Friday 6th September!

If you’re interested in a course that assists specifically in a particular garden project, consider our Garden Design Coaching course. Our next course runs from the 16th September – 18th October. But be quick, spots are very limited, and registrations will close next Friday 16th AugustCLICK HERE for more details.


  1. If you want to see more great New Zealand gardens then check out the Taranaki Garden Festivals – both the main and the Fringe festival. 1st to 10th Nov.

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