We’re thrilled to welcome Ashley Edwards to the Horatio’s Garden team, who has recently become the Head Gardener of Horatio’s Garden London & South East!
Ashley will be responsible for nurturing our fifth garden at the London Spinal Cord Injury Centre, with the support of our brand new London volunteer team. He will also be there to welcome and support patients, loved ones and NHS staff visiting the garden, who have been eagerly awaiting the opening of this stunning sanctuary all summer.
Prior to working with us, Ashley graduated from Royal Botanic Gardens Kew in 2014, after completing the School of Horticulture’s prestigious diploma course. Following this, he worked at Longwood Gardens in the USA, before becoming a Garden Manager intern at the Anna Tasca Lanza Cooking School in Sicily.
Most recently, Ashley was Gardener-in-Charge at Strawberry Hill House & Garden, the former Twickenham residence of Horace Walpole and later Lady Frances Waldegrave. Whilst the house is a beautiful example of Gothic Revival architecture, the five-acre garden was deliberately created in a gorgeous romantic style to complement Walpole’s castle.
The Strawberry Hill Garden has been carefully restored to its original eighteenth century glory, therefore Ashley understands the importance of thoughtful planting and the value of constantly tending to a garden that offers year-round colour and beauty. As Gardener-in-Charge, Ashley was also supported in his role by a team of volunteers and ran a blog documenting all the happenings in this unique garden, making him the perfect fit for his new role in Horatio’s Garden.
Since joining us, Ashley has spent time in both our gardens in Salisbury and Stoke Mandeville and as of Monday 3rd August has begun planting up the site at Stanmore! With the arrival of the trees from Crocus, the garden is now really beginning to take shape and the addition of so much greenery has already fostered a great deal of positivity. Ashley and our new volunteer team have been working together to put all the plants in place, alongside Tom Stuart-Smith and his team, as well as a group from Crocus who have supplied the flora. The site of our new garden has really been buzzing with activity, enthusiasm and camaraderie, which is a wonderful sign of things to come once the garden is open in just a few short weeks.
We’re very much looking forward to working with Ashley and our new volunteers, who have all shown great kindness and commitment since joining us in Horatio’s Garden London & South East, and who together with Tom Stuart-Smith will tell our new garden’s story for many years to come.