BRITISH GARDENING TELEVISION FANS, HAVE I GOT SOMETHING FOR YOU

I can't tell you how happy I am that so many of you have been enjoying the British gardening television shows I've been linking to for the last year. It makes me feel like a normal human being, because when I see a new show pop up on my Youtube feed, I get downright giddy, immediately drop everything I'm doing and sit down and watch it.



And I found another one that I think you'll really like. It's called "Monty Don's Big Dreams, Small Spaces." Just the title encompasses so many things that I love: Monty Don? Obsessed. Big Dreams? Well, yeah, who doesn't have big gardening dreams? Small Spaces: Check.

Sadly there are only five of the hour-long shows. Each episode features two families who are creating new gardens over the course of a year. My man Monty shows up in the beginning to help them with their plans, once or twice in the middle of the project to pitch in and then comes back a year later to see how the garden ended up. The gardens ranged from low-budget overalls to $20,000 dream gardens. Some of the concepts and designs were downright strange, but to Monty's credit, even though you knew he was thinking, 'This is not going to work,' he never tried to talk people out of their dream garden but tried to help them make the design more practical.

So here's my question: What would you do if Monty Don or any other serious gardening expert came to your garden and suggested ways you could improve it? I know I'd be taking notes and probably doing exactly what they suggested. I found it interesting that that's not the case in this series. There were some homeowners who were so set in their plans, no matter how impractical, that they weren't going to listen to a thing Monty said. That sort of blows my mind.

Anyway, give it a watch and see what you think of it. I like it because it's gardening on a bit more approachable level.



And I have even better news for you. I figured out how to set up a Youtube channel with playlists of all my favorite gardening shows. So now you don't have to wade through a mass of links in posts. You can just go to the channel. I got most of the shows I've mentioned before linked there into playlists by show and I'll add more as I find them.

I've added the latest in "The Great British Garden Revival" to that playlist and you may want to check out a show that is airing on a different network called "Show Me Your Garden." There's only one episode up so far but I'll be on the lookout for more. The quality isn't as good as in the BBC shows, unfortunately.

It sounds like "Gardener's World" is set to return in March, which seems like it's ages away.


11 comments :

  1. Thanks again for another garden show recommendation. February and March are the time of year I get so desperate for spring that I have to turn to my garden video stash, but it will be fun to have new ones this spring! -Beth

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    1. Gardeners' World starts again March 6. I can't wait! In the meantime I'm plowing through about my fourth watching of all the previous seasons I can find. I'm so frustrated that I can't find the 2013 season anywhere!

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  2. I'm obsessed with Monty too - discovered him on Fork to Fork (when he was much younger) and love him on Gardeners World. Can't wait to enjoy this new series.

    How is the Year at Kew Gardens series? Worth watching?

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    1. Kew Gardens is interesting, but I don't find it to be as educational as the other shows. Still, it's a pretty fascinating look behind the scenes. Also a good education in why female gardeners should probably always wear bras.

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  3. I'm going to check these out!! Woo hoo!

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  4. These are GREAT!!!! Thanks for passing on all of these very entertaining and educational shows!

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    1. You're welcome! I'm glad you're enjoying them. Isn't it amazing how much better they are than anything that passes for gardening television in the U.S.?

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  5. Hi Erin
    I am the lady in the photograph that heads this post, I am standing with my husband and Monty discussing our newly finished Norwegian garden! That was 2 1/2 years ago. The garden has gone from strength to strength and looks even lovelier now. I am sorry that the YouTube film of the series got taken down. They often repeat the series on British TV but at awkward times and sometimes don't even include our episode.
    It is lovely to know how much British gardening programmes are appreciated over the pond.
    Helen

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    1. Welcome, Helen! I remember your garden and I'm so happy to hear that it just keeps getting better. The good news is that I've figured out how to watch BBC programming on iPlayer so I'm catching all my favorite gardening programs there. Although in this winter wasteland before Gardener's World and Beechgrove Garden are back on I've been forced to watch episodes of "Gardening from A to Z," all of which I've seen at least five times already. You have such great garden programming in the U.K., unlike anything we can get here.

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    2. Also, I'm supremely envious that you've met Monty.

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    3. Thanks Erin for your reply. I forgot to tell you that you can see up-to-date photos of the garden by following the links on my blog www.leavesfrommygarden.co.uk. I am also hoping to blog a bit about what it was like to make the programme.
      Kind regards
      Helen

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