What we can learn from Roy Lancaster

Nicotiana rustica Roy Lancaster is well known for presenting Gardeners World and appeared on other horticultural shows such as Gardeners Question Time. He is a prolific horticultural writer and speaker and he could be called a ‘Plant Hunter’ as his career took him all around the world discovering new plants. For his services to the plant world, he has been awarded an OBE and a CBE plus a lifetime achievement award from the Gardeners Media Guild. His passion for plants is very special. So what can we learn from Roy Lancaster?


Learn from Roy Lancaster that it’s OK to get emotional about plants

Roy’s love of gardens started as a young boy when he would explore the moors near Bolton. From discovering Nicotiana rustica on a local allotment to later growing a rare Chinese Magnolia, Roy clearly has a passion for plants in his blood. By his own admission, he gets very emotional about plants which we can only assume is due to his connection with energy. Roy has said that his energy is ‘green’ energy which comes from plants and he still has many plants to discover yet. His enthusiasm is enough to make any plantsman emotional! So if you love plants or visit gardens and feel overwhelmed by their beauty, that’s totally fine by Roy Lancaster.


Travel to enjoy plants can be learnt from Roy Lancaster

Throughout Roy’s career, he has vastly travelled the world and even credits previous ‘plant hunters’ as his all-time heroes. He clearly loves to find new places and native plants to the country he is visiting. Roy has even travelled to Iran help with planning the very first botanic garden in the country and to Jordan on a secret mission to save some dying trees in a royal palace garden. This love for travel and plants is abundant in all of his writing and talks. Travelling to different countries to see and experience other plants and gardens is a huge benefit to gardeners if possible.


Take inspiration from Chinese planting from Roy Lancaster

Roy has travelled to China and loved it so much he later published a book called ‘Plantsman’s Paradise, Travel’s in China’. With over 3000 native plants on just one mountain in China and 137 species of Oaks, it really is a country that loves plants. Many of these plants are grown in UK gardens and across the world now. Roy’s book not only talks about the plants but the people that contribute, conserve and have a passion for plants. His enthusiasm will undoubtedly encourage you to implement some Chinese style planting in your garden.

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