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The View from Great Dixter: Christopher Lloyd's Garden Legacy

By Rosemary Alexander and Fergus Garrett

Foreword by Beth Chatto

This book will enthrall you until it's time to make your own pilgrimage to East Sussex.

New York Times

Expansive herbaceous borders, orchid-filled meadows enveloped by old stone, precision-carved topiary, and an air of gentle eccentricity make Great Dixter the quintessential English country garden. Yet the impact of Christopher Lloyd's unique creation extends way beyond the gardening world and affects all who pass through it in a very particular way.

In this intimate collection of written and photographic contributions, Christopher Lloyd's wide circle of family and friends describe what Great Dixter means to them. Food, poetry, music and plants feature large with one guest recounting the delight of eating an exquisitely cooked turbot and another how a bloom of magnolia was analyzed with botanical precision during the course of dinner. Visitors remember the feel of the centuries-old floorboards underfoot, the thrill of waking early to peer out on topiary enshrouded in fog, and many describe how, in one way or another, Great Dixter changed their lives.

This valuable record encapsulates what makes time spent at Great Dixter in particular, and to some extent time spent in all gardens, so irreplaceable. It adds an important layer to our understanding of Christopher Lloyd's achievements and spurs us on to new heights in our own gardening endeavors.

Media reviews

"This book will enthrall you until it's time to make your own pilgrimage to East Sussex."

—Dominique Browning, New York Times

"Charming book. ... Takes the reader as close as possible to actually sharing the experience of visiting Great Dixter."

—Chris Bailes, Garden (RHS)

"I wasn't sure what to expect when I picked up this title, but I was very pleasantly surprised. As I read the first few pages I found myself regretting that I'd never have the opportunity to meet one of the world's greatest gardening personalities, but then by the time I finished the book I realized I felt as though I had."


"Takes fans behind the scenes of [this] English estate for intimate glimpses of living and gardening there."

—Mary James, San Diego Home/Garden Lifestyles

"Like a sublime English house party in print."

—Barbara Mahany, Chicago Tribune

"A delightful book, and the oral history-style narrative that bounces around between decades and topics makes it easy to browse."

—Elizabeth Licata, Garden Rant

"Celebratory. ... The volume is filled with superb photos of the house and garden in all seasons, as well as photos of Lloyd and many of the contributors."

SciTech Book News

"What makes it armchair-worthy: ... you will encounter a great garden like no other."

Daily Hampshire Gazette

"No matter how much you think you may know about Christopher Lloyd and Great Dixter, this book will open your eyes in the most entertaining way."


About the authors

Rosemary Alexander

Founder and principal of The English Gardening School at the Chelsea Physic Garden, London, Rosemary Alexander writes and lectures worldwide on garden design. She was awarded the Veitch Memorial Medal by the Royal Horticultural Society and lived as a tenant of the National Trust property in Kent. Her current Hampshire garden has been featured in most major gardening magazines.

Read more about Rosemary Alexander

Fergus Garrett

Fergus Garrett joined Great Dixter as Head Gardener in 1992 and worked closely with Christopher Lloyd as gardener and friend during an important time in the garden’s development. Now he combines his full-time, hands-on gardening role at Dixter with lecturing, writing articles, serving on Royal Horticultural Society committees and, as Chief Executive of the Great Dixter Charitable Trust, moving the garden forward in ever more exciting directions.

Read more about Fergus Garrett

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