209 episodes

Do you want to know how to grow plants and get the best out of your outdoor space? Do you find traditional gardening media baffling and/or boring? Then you’re in the right place, because the Roots and All podcast is here to dig deep into how to create a successful garden.

If you want honest information and insider knowledge about how to get results, join irreverent horticulturist Sarah Wilson as she chats to the best people from the world of plants and gardens. Sarah is on a mission to help you create your own beautiful green environment, with a focus on saving resources and working with nature.

Don’t forget to subscribe to the podcast to make sure you don’t miss an episode.

Roots and All - Gardening Podcast Sarah Wilson

    • Leisure
    • 4.7 • 138 Ratings

Do you want to know how to grow plants and get the best out of your outdoor space? Do you find traditional gardening media baffling and/or boring? Then you’re in the right place, because the Roots and All podcast is here to dig deep into how to create a successful garden.

If you want honest information and insider knowledge about how to get results, join irreverent horticulturist Sarah Wilson as she chats to the best people from the world of plants and gardens. Sarah is on a mission to help you create your own beautiful green environment, with a focus on saving resources and working with nature.

Don’t forget to subscribe to the podcast to make sure you don’t miss an episode.

    Historic Roses

    Historic Roses

    This week, I’m speaking to Michael Marriott about historic roses. Micheal is an expert rosarian, Chairman of the Historic Roses Group and author of the recently published book RHS ‘Roses’. We talk about what historic roses are, some of the myths surrounding them and why they’re an excellent choice for your garden, particularly if you’re looking for something a little different. I began by asking Michael about his background and how he became interested in historic roses.
    Dr Ian Bedford’s Bug of the Week: Harebell Carpenters
    What we cover
    The Historic Roses Group and Michael’s involvement with the group
    What is an historic rose? 
    More common historic roses we might have come across
    Disease resistance
    Scent
    Do they repeat flower?
    Gardens in the UK where you can see historic roses
    Good old rose varieties if you’re dipping your toe in the water of growing them
    Links
    Historic Roses Group
    RHS Roses: An inspirational Guide to Choosing and Growing the Best Roses by Michael Marriott
    Other episodes if you liked this one:
    Pruning Roses with Richard Stubbs of David Austin

    • 24 min
    Gardening for Wildlife

    Gardening for Wildlife

    • 29 min
    Episode 164: Growing Under Protection

    Episode 164: Growing Under Protection

    This week I’m speaking to horticultural expert Guy Deakins who amongst other things is a garden designer, historic gardens expert, consultant and author of the new book Gardener’s Guide to Protected Growing: Creating a successful, sustainable and health micro-climate in the garden. I wanted to find out a bit more about creating protected environments for plants, and about the positives and negatives and Guy’s book provides comprehensive answers all rooted in scientific research.
    Dr Ian Bedford’s Bug of the Week: Fleas in the garden
    What we cover
    What is protected growing? 
    When thinking about protecting crops, should we look to install a windbreak first of all? How do we know we’re not going to create a frost pocket or channel winds in an unfavourable way?
    Does growing on a protected site mean you are usually dealing with an artificial growing medium?
    If you want to automate the watering, some good alternatives to hand watering
    Avoiding too much light for plants growing in a protected space
    Moderating temperatures
    Good examples of growing in protected spaces
    About Guy Deakins
    Since starting his business in 1999, Guy has gained experience in many differing environments from small courtyards and roof gardens in the heart of the city, fen gardens in rural Norfolk, windswept beach-side formal gardens, and country estates designed by twentieth century cognoscente – with just about every beautiful variation in between.
    With the coming of the global climate crisis, the focus of the company is always to encourage biodiversity whilst maintaining a good design aesthetic. To this end, Guy studied neuroscience at degree level, so that he could fully understand the brain’s aesthetic pathways when looking at shapes, structures and colours.
    Links
    Gardener’s Guide to Protected Growing: Creating a successful, sustainable and health micro-climate in the garden by Guy Deakins - Crowood Press, 2022
    www.guydeakinsgardening.com
    Patreon Membership

    • 24 min
    Garden Roots

    Garden Roots

    This week I’m speaking to gardener and writer Lulah Ellender about her book Grounding: Finding Home in a Garden. Lulah’s book is about tuning into the unceasing rhythms of nature in order to live with uncertainty and how they can help us become more connected to the places in which we live. We talk about how gardens can root us in time and place, even when those roots seem tenuous and liable to break.
    Dr Ian Bedford’s Bug of the Week: Sentient bugs
    What we cover
    The premise behind the book and the circumstances in which Lulah came to write it
    How Lulah gardened differently when she thought she might lose her garden
    Why the potential loss of her garden seemed such a wrench
    Custodianship of gardens 
    Advantages to being a temporary, more tenuous occupier of a space
    How do gardens help us cope with our emotions? How do they help us make sense of cycles of life, death, birth, aging?
    About Lulah Ellender
    Lulah lives in Lewes, East Sussex, with her husband, four children and assorted animals. She has written for the Guardian, the Mail on Sunday’s YOU magazine, and Sussex Life among others. She was recently writer in residence at Charleston’s Festival of the Garden. Her first book Elisabeth’s Lists was published in 2018. 
    Links
    Grounding: Finding Home in a Garden by Lulah Ellender - Granta Books, April 2022
    Patreon Membership

    • 26 min
    Connecting with Plants

    Connecting with Plants

    Hello and welcome to this week’s episode where I’m speaking to Marion Whitehead from the Blue Mountains Botanic Garden in New South Wales, Australia, part of the Royal Botanic Gardens Sydney.
    I talk with Marion about one of her areas of speciality; the intersection of plants and human feelings, particularly in the context of 3 books as recommended by Marion; Enid Blyton’s ‘The Magic Faraway Tree’, Frances Hodgson Burnett’s ‘The Secret Garden’ and ‘The Overstory’ by Richard Powers.
    Dr Ian Bedford’s Bug of the Week: Venom
    What we cover
    Enid Blyton’s ‘The Magic Faraway Tree’: the tree is the central character, but actually seems pretty inanimate. How does the magic faraway tree provoke emotion?
    Is there a suggestion in Blyton’s book that wild plants are more emotionally provocative than cultivated plants?
    ‘The Secret Garden’: the garden heals but it seems to be healing physically as much as emotionally, is this the case?
    Is the garden responding to individuals’ needs? 
    Do people instinctively find or seek out what they need, emotionally, in a garden?
    Do we have the language to describe our relationship to plants? 
    Richard Powers’ ‘The Overstory’: are plants losing their power to connect with us emotionally, or vice versa, given our detachment from nature? 
    About Marion Whitehead
    Marion is Senior Horticulturalist at the Blue Mountains Botanic Garden. She has an extensive background in cool climate plant species, with a specific interest in ephemeral and heathland plants. Marion has many horticultural topics of interest from Australian plant history, to managing plant nurseries, to the emotional connection between human and fellow flowers.
    Links
    www.bluemountainsbotanicgarden.com
    The Overstory by Richard Powers 
    The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett 
    Patreon Membership

    • 24 min
    Show Gardens

    Show Gardens

    • 44 min

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5
138 Ratings

138 Ratings

Ryecroft22 ,

Absolutely hooked!!

Discovered by chance. Such a wonderful range of subjects and speakers. I have learnt so much. Always looking forward to the next episode … thank you ☺️

CarmenJesus ,

Fabulous: informative, inspiring, heart-warming

I have just discovered this podcast and I am delighted. Thank you Sharah!

SamModica ,

Just what the gardening world needs!

Roots and All is one of my favourite podcasts. Open minded and always well researched, Sarah does a great job of asking the right questions to make the interviewees open up about their special subject, and then gives them the space to elaborate.
There are plenty of glossy magazines, revered names and big-business exhibitions in the gardening world, which can make it seem a bit aloof or stuck in the past (especially to young people) . So it’s refreshing to hear from a wide range of real gardeners who dispel the myths, talk about what actually works for them and discuss what they love about horticulture. Likewise it’s great to hear on the philosophy/ psychology of why we garden, which it’s clear Sarah is always keen to explore.
I run a garden design business and find that each episode will teach me something or take my thinking in a new direction. So please keep up the good work !

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