Matthew Biggs trained at The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, has presented numerous TV gardening programs and is a regular on UK radio. He has written several books and contributes to magazines including the Royal Horticultural Society’s The Garden. Matthew lectures at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew; Oxford University Botanic Gardens; and the Cookery School of Michelin-starred chief Jean-Christophe Novelli. He is course Director of the Plants and Plantsmanship course at the English Gardening School.
Lessons from Great Gardeners
Gardening is continually transformed and enhanced by great gardeners. This book profiles 40 of these remarkable figures — including Australia’s own Jeremy Francis and New Zealand’s Bev McConnell — and explores how their work can be used to inspire and instruct. Stories of their life and work are revealed together with practical hints and tips. Packed with botanical illustrations of their signature plants, the book also includes stunning photographs of twelve of the world’s most iconic gardens.
SPECIFICATIONS: Hardback | 227 x 170 mm | Colour | 224 Pages |
Since its earliest days, the art and science of gardening has been continually transformed and enhanced by great gardeners — men and women whose passion for gardening has driven them to improve and innovate, to overcome challenges and experiment with new ideas. These gardeners have provided inspiration for future generations, as have their gardens, which attract millions of visitors every year.
Lessons from Great Gardeners profiles forty of these remarkable figures and explores how their work can be used to inspire and instruct gardeners of all levels and abilities. From the greats of yesteryear to the best modern-day practitioners, the gardeners are drawn from throughout history and from around the world — including Australia’s own Jeremy Francis and New Zealand’s Bev McConnell.
The stories of their life and work are revealed, along with practical hints and tips that unlock the secrets gained from their long years of trial and error. Packed with botanical illustrations of their signature plants, the book also includes stunning photographs of twelve of the world’s most iconic gardens, from Jardin Majorelle in Morocco to Sissinghurst in Kent. This is a journey through the world of gardening past and present, and a beautifully presented source of inspiration and ideas for all gardens, great and small.
Pool and Outdoor Design
“Whether you are just starting out, or have been gardening for years, there is always something new to learn. This book will show you what is possible in your garden even with limited time, space or water.”
Organic Gardener, December 2015
“…an intriguing and delightful book…A fascinating easy-to-read journey through 500 years of gardening”.
Home Magazine, Herald Sun, December 2015
“How often have you marveled at the great gardens of the world and wondered how the heck did they do it? This gem of a book answers that question”.
Outdoor Rooms, December 2015
“Stunning photography is interspersed with botanical illustrations of some of the gardeners’ signature plants as stories from their lives and works are revealed.”
Wyza, November 2015
“Uncover the secrets and history behind one of Australia’s most beautiful gardens”
New Zealand Gardener, November 2015
“It is a truth universally acknowledged that a gardener is a gardener, wherever in the world or whenever in history he or she happens to be born. I have been thinking about this because I’ve been reading Lessons from Great Gardeners: Forty Gardening Icons and What They Teach Us, a lovely book just released by Exisle Publishing, and it’s struck me
how many universal truths there are about all gardeners, everywhere.”
Commerical Horticultural Magazine NZ, November 2015
“Anyone interested in serious gardening or landscaping will thoroughly enjoy dipping into this feast of gardening history at its best.”
Better Homes and Gardens, October 2015
“Lovers of good garden design shouldn’t be without Lessons from Great Gardeners…One to treasure now and in the future.”
High life, October 2015
“This book would make a delightful gift, but leave some time to read it yourself first.”
Splash, September 2015
“draws on artists who painted with plants, inveterate collectors, eccentrics, experimenters, billionaires and monarchs who expressed their creativity through their gardens”
Hort Journal, September 2015
“the information given about the plantsperson/gardener/designer (gives) you a little peek into their lives. Some were eccentric, mostly they were unconventional and freethinking and ahead of their time”
Gardening Australia, September 2015
“contains the ‘eureka’ moments of 40 horticultural superstars… there is plenty here to inspire you”
SA Life, September 2015
“profiles 40 great gardeners and explores how their work can inspire gardeners of all abilities”
Your Garden Magazine, September 2015
“Never underestimate the knowledge an expert gardener can impart. A new book shares the secrets of 40 great gardeners”
The Adelaide Advertiser, September 2015
“I wanted to cover as many gardening styles as possible in different climates.” And check out Matthew Biggs’ five guiding principles for gardens!
Garden Drum, September 2015
“An inviting book.”
Courier Mail, September 2015
“Biggs takes a wander through some of the world’s grandest gardens and ponders the legacy of their ground breaking creators”
Belle, September 2015
“Those with green thumbs will take inspiration from the 40 ‘gardening icons’ profiled in this volume”
Last Train to Paradise describes the halcyon days of New Zealand rail, some of which the author was fortunate enough to experience personally. The ‘name’ trains and journeys cover a considerable period of New Zealand’s history, from the late 1800s, through the ‘golden’ era of train travel (the first four decades of the 20th century). Among the special journeys covered are the Prince of Wales’ royal progress through New Zealand in 1920, and travelling the ‘Test Match Special’ to enjoy the rugby in 1956. The book also includes a wide variety of fascinating and unfamiliar photographs, not just of the trains themselves but also of the characters who travelled in them.
SPECIFICATIONS: Hardback | 242 x 184 mm / 9 ½ x 7 ⅕ Inches | 224 Pages |
Forget the bungee jumps, skydives, jet boats and numerous other things Kiwis have invented to get visitors excited here, New Boots in New Zealand is a whole other adventure. Sick of being stuck in a London office where the furthest she had to walk was to the drink machine, author Gillian Orrell decided to escape city life to tackle New Zealand’s nine Great Walks.
New Boots in New Zealand is her humorous and highly enjoyable first-hand account of walking the nine Great Walks solo within a matter of months. In it you’ll discover much about New Zealand’s rugged and unforgiving landscapes whilst learning additional facts, anecdotes and insights into New Zealand’s culture, history and peoples.
Discover all nine Great Walks: Milford, Routeburn, Abel Tasman, Kepler, Heaphy, Whanganui River, Lake Waikaremoana, Tongariro and Rakiura.
SPECIFICATIONS: Paperback | 210 x 135 mm / 8 ⅓ x 5 ⅓ Inches | Maps + Colour Photographs | 328 Pages |
The war in the South Pacific saw some of the most grueling fighting of World War Two. Conditions were unpleasant- fetid heat, torrential downpours and hostile flora and fauna- while the Japanese enemy were ruthless and would often fight to the last man. Amphibious warfare, jungle warfare and the need to co-operate with our American ally all meant that new demands were made on New Zealand soldiers. Yet the war in the South Pacific came to be seen as an easy war, generally overlooked (with the exception of Guadalcanal) by historians.
From ignorance of what the soldiers were called upon to endure, the notion arose that service in the South Pacific was somehow less worthy than the ‘real war’ in Europe against the Nazis. This attitude continued in the post-war world and today the soldiers of 3NZ Division are all but forgotten. Pacific Star sets the record straight, shedding new light on the sacrifices and tribulations which the soldiers of 3NZ Division had to endure in the service of the Allied cause.
SPECIFICATIONS: Hardback, case and jacket | 242 x 184 mm / 9 ½ x 7 ¼ Inches | Black & White | Approx. 60 Photographs + 5 Maps | 232 Pages |
2008 History finalist in the Montana Book Awards. First published eight years ago to enthusiastic reviews and critical acclaim, this classic celebrated readable scholarship is now available in paperback. Telling the story of the mounted riflemen in Sinai and Palestine, Devil’s on Horses uses the soldiers’ original letters and diaries to describe the crucial battles against the Ottoman Turkish Forces.
The horses play a major part in the story, but of the thousands of faithful animals involved, only one would ever return home. By then the war was over and the Turkish Empire had been destroyed. The Anzac soldiers and their horses had played a vital role in securing the victory.
SPECIFICATIONS: Paperback or Hardback | 246 x 189 mm / 9 ½ x 7 ¼ Inches | Back & White | 408 Pages |