It’s the time of year most gardeners have completed their pruning, packed away their tools and lawnmowers and are content to hibernate indoors until the spring.
But it seems Rachel de Thame isn’t one of them. The Gardeners’ World presenter is pulling on her wellies for a 10-part series aimed at saving our rich garden heritage.
Great British Garden Revival, starting this week on BBC2, sees Rachel and other celebrity gardeners such as Monty Don, Carol Klein, Joe Swift, Charlie Dimmock and Chris Beardshaw, focus on different aspects of gardening.
They hope to revive the nation’s passion for gardening, in the same way The Great British Bake Off reignited our interest in baking.
“We are one of the great gardening nations of the world but with such little time on our hands these days we’ve become stuck in a rut,” says Rachel. “This series encourages us to experiment and to see our outdoor space in a different light. We’ll be doing that by visiting extraordinary gardens and talking to some incredible people who are passionate about what they do.”
The series kicks off with sections on wild flowers and front gardens while next week will see Rachel getting to grips with topiary.
Rachel, 52, who is married to film director Gerard de Thame and has four children, started presenting Gardeners’ World in 1998. She admits she feels most at home when she’s getting her hands dirty.
“I find it very cathartic – you can think through all sorts of things while you’re digging the borders,” she says. “I’m fascinated by the diversity of plants, I love the design aspect, of being in a beautiful garden and sharing it with the people I love. Hopefully, my passion will prove infectious.”