Let’s get together

It is no surprise that our meetings are so well attended. Not only are they interesting and informative, they are also enjoyable social gatherings.

As always, our Programme Committee has worked hard to invite speakers with very different skills, knowledge and experience and you will see below that their subject matter is not always gardening related.

So, if you are thinking of joining us, come along to a meeting and you will be made very welcome – for non-members there is a £2.00 entry fee.

All meetings are in the WI Hall, North Street, Bridport and start at 7.30 pm.

Contact details for officers of the Bridport & District Gardening Club are available in the Newsletter.

A talk about the Garden Centre Year - Thursday, 18 April 2024 7:30pm

Bridport WI Hall, North Street, Bridport Speaker A member of The Gold Club A behind-the-scenes-view of the garden centres owned by the Gardens Group which are Castle, Brinsmore, and Poundbury Gardens, with an insight into the garden centre industry.

A talk about Vegetable Gardening - Thursday, 16 May 2024 7:30pm

Bridport WI Hall, North Street, Bridport Speaker Sally Nex

Sally started growing her own veg over 20 years ago with a few bean plants in a city garden, just to see if she could. After running out of space in the garden, she graduated to an allotment.

Sally now gardens an acre of windy hillside in Somerset,  where she is gradually winning the battle of the brambles to carve out a large and slightly unruly kitchen garden.

She studied horticulture and design at Capel Manor College in London and Bicton College in Devon, and also writes extensively about all things to do with gardening, though mostly about growing things you can eat. She has regular slots in Gardeners’ World magazine, The Garden, Grow Your Own magazine, and The Guardian.

A talk about Gardening, a very British Tradition - Thursday, 20 June 2024 7:30pm

Bridport WI Hall, North Street, Bridport Speaker Margie Hoffnung

Margie completed a 4 year Horticulture Degree at Writtle College, after working at Westonbirt Arboretum. Her sandwich placement was with Rosemary Verey, the well-known plantswoman, author and garden designer, with whom she continued to work for over a decade until Rosemary’s death. She also spent some years at Highgrove as both gardener and garden guide for HRH The Prince of Wales, as well as manning Jekka McVicar’s herb stand at flower shows like Chelsea and Hampton Court for several seasons.

She subsequently completed a Masters degree in the Conservation of Historic Gardens & Cultural Landscapes at Bath and since 2013 has worked for the Garden History Society (now the Gardens Trust) and is their Conservation Officer. In this role she liaises closely with County Gardens Trusts all round England and responds to planning applications which might affect listed historic designed landscapes, to make sure, as far as possible, that these proposals do not have an adverse effect on those sites or their settings.

Margie is a regular speaker to gardening societies on a variety of topics as well as speaking on conservation issues relating to historic gardens to heritage bodies.

A talk about Grasses in the Garden - Thursday, 18 July 2024 7:30pm

Bridport WI Hall, North Street, Bridport Speaker Katherine Crouch

Katherine comes from a family of gardeners. It was only when she lived for the first time in a city flat while at the Glasgow School of Art that she realised how much she missed gardens.

In 1999 she won the first BBC Gardener of the Year competition.  She set up Katherine Crouch Garden Design in early 2000 and has been designing gardens all over the South West ever since. She was also BBC Gardener of the Decade in 2008 and also won a Gold medal at Chelsea Flower Show for designing a display for Kings Seeds 125th anniversary.

A talk on Dahlias - Thursday, 19 September 2024 7:30pm

Bridport WI Hall, North Street, Bridport Speaker Anna May

Anna May is from Dorset Dahlias which is based in Bridport. She started growing dahlias 6 years ago and since then has discovered Dahlias in every colour imaginable. As her collection increased and she found she had too many for the house and friends she started to sell them. Each year during the dahlia season she divides and takes cuttings to ensure hundreds of flowers are available throughout the season. She sells them in bunches or by the bucket and also caters for events.