Recommended reading

Tales of the Alhambra by Washington Irving
Although it is not about gardens per se, this 1830s classic is set amid the grandeur of the Alhambra and the tales describe the gorgeous palace gardens. The stories of intrigue, romance, greed and hidden treasure make this a really enjoyable read.
Great Gardens of the World: In Search of Paradise by Penelope Hobhouse
The endeavours of gardeners from around the world are gathered in this volume. The tour beings with the earliest gardens alive in the Middle East, china and Japan. It then moves to the wonders of Italy and on to modern garden design.
The New Garden Paradise: Great Private Gardens of the World by Dominique Browning and The Editors of House & Garden
Uncovers some of the hidden masterworks of modern gardening with color photographs and international scope.
1001 Gardens You Must See Before You Die by Rae Spencer-Jones and Elizabeth Scholtz
Details gardens from around the world in every possible climate, style and size. There are public spaces everyone knows and those only the best traveled will see in places like Iran and Romania. Each entry comes with history, design and climate information.
Gardens of Europe: A Traveler’s Guide by Charles Quest-Ritson
This book covers the vast sweep of Europe’s horticultural and garden design heritage, an influence that has affected gardening throughout the world. This comprehensive study takes in gardens from Ireland to Georgia and from Russia to Sicily.
Gardenwalks in the Southeast: Beautiful Gardens from Washington, D.C., to the Gulf Coast by Marina Harrison
This book is indispensable for garden travelers in the American South. It covers Washington D.C., Virginia, Kentucky, Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Mississippi, Alabama and Louisiana. Other books in the same series cover other states in the USA.
The Most Beautiful Gardens in the World by Alain Le Toquin
A coffee-table style book covering exotic gardens from Morocco, Singapore, New Zealand and Iran with gorgeous photos and lively text.
English Gardens in the Twentieth Century: From the Archives of Country Life by Tim Richardson
This book presents 200 images of the great houses and gardens in England. It starts with formal gardens of Victorian England and progresses to the modernist, artist, wild and cottage gardens.
House and Garden
This magazine focuses on interior design, entertaining and gardening and is published in a variety of countries with a local focus including England, Australia, South Africa and New Zealand.
Country Life
An essential read for those passionate about the British countryside, fine art, gardening and property. There is a similar magazine published in Australia.
Adventures of a Gardener by Sir Peter Smithers
An autobiography of the great gardener, upon whom it is believed the James Bond character was based.

Useful Websites

Garden Central (
A directory of clubs worldwide plus the opportunity to start your own free club website. Also offers some gardening tours in the USA.
Garden Visit (
The Garden and Landscape Guide provides information about gardens open to the public worldwide and landscape architecture.
National Gardens Open Scheme (
The NGS open gardens of quality, character and interest to the public in the United Kingdom. Funds raised through the garden visits go to charity.
Open Garden Australia (
Australia’s Open Garden Scheme promotes the knowledge and pleasure of gardens and gardening across Australia.
Garden Conservancy (
Lists nearly 400 private gardens to visit from coast to coast in the USA.
Horticulture Magazine (
An American magazine with gardening articles, lots of tips plus details of the world’s private and public gardens and nurseries.