Academic & Research Work

Whilst most of my talks are quite general & designed for a wide ranging audience,  my academic research concentrates on more detailed and specialized areas.  This does not mean that it is difficult to understand or impossible to enjoy BUT it does concentrate on much more specific questions, individual gardens, people, books or archival material.   

If you are organizing a programme you might find a subject here that would interest your audience, so please ask me & I’m sure that I can tell you how suitable it would be.


Famine, War, Plague & Fire: London’s “green” responses to the Four Horsemen of the long 17th century Apocalypse, Institute of Historical Research, Sept 2020

Nicholas Leate: A worthy merchant and lover of all faire flowers, Gardens Trust Winter Lecture, Jan 2020

Botanick Acquaintances: The Life and Letters of Charles Hatton 1635-1708, Institute of Historical Research, Dec 2019

Puzzle Pictures:  Writtle University College, Essex Gardens Trust, Nov 2018

Plant Hunters and their impact on the British Garden, Borde Hill, Sussex Gardens Trust, Nov 2018

Humphry Repton: Britain’s First Landscape Gardener,   Suffolk WEA, Oct 2018

The Gardens and Open Spaces of Early Modern London, Queen’s House, Greenwich, June 2018

John Evelyn and the Garden as a Scientific Elysium,  Rewley House, Oxford University, June 2018

Gardening for All?  A day conference for Suffolk Gardens Trust, March 2018

London’s Gardeners 1660-1837, Victoria & Albert Museum, London Life Series , Feb 2018

In a Flap: Repton and the Transformation of Landscape [or our view of it] Institute of Historical Research, Jan 2018

Thomas Fairchild, The Fairchild Lecture for The Worshipful Company of Gardeners, June 2017

Imperial Pride and Surburbia in the Land of the Crested Lion: The Parks and Gardens of Colonial Burma,  Institute of Historical Research, March 2017

Gardens in the Art of Tudor and Jacobean England, Suffolk Gardens Trust, March 2017

How the Sacred Turf Got Trod: the Struggle to Open the Bloomsbury Squares to the Public, Bloomsbury Squares Conference, London May 2016

John Claudius Loudon and the Rise of the Amateur Gardener,  Northumberland Gardens Conference, September 2015

Botanic Circles: Gardeners, Botanists and Nurserymen in Bishop Compton’s London,  Fulham Palace, June 2015

“When Adam Delved: Productive Gardening in England before the Agricultural Revolution,  Shropshire Gardens Trust, March 2015

Fit for a queen: the London gardens of Catherine of Braganza, London Parks and Gardens Trust, January 2015

“The Principal Delight is in the Mind”: Plant Collectors and their Networks in 17thc England and beyond, Intellectual History Conference, Durham University, July 2014

“I shall soon have quite a War Garden”: Charlotte Cuffe and the National Botanic Gardens of Burma, Institute of Historical Research, January 2014

The National Botanic Gardens of Burma, Britain-Burma Society, November 2013

Let the Sky Rain Potatoes: Some thoughts on the origins of the English obsession with gardening, Birkbeck Garden History Group Annual Lecture, November 2013

“I was Infinitely taken with this Agreeable Cheat: John Evelyn and the Art of Deception in the 17thc Garden”,  Institute of Historical Research, June 2013

“A little bit of Surrey in the sun”: One hundred years of the National Botanic Gardens of Burma,   Garden History Society Winter Lecture,  March 2013

“Take the hornes of a white male goate”: natural artifice and artificial nature in the 17thc garden,  Conference on “Rustic Nature and Artistic Rusticity”, Maison Francaise, Oxford, March 2013

The Last Map of Troy? ,  Anglo-American History Conference , July 2012

“We see distinctly only what we know thoroughly”: European expansion and “newly discovered” lands and landscapes,    Landscape, Art and History Symposium,  London,  March 2012

Communicating through Cartography: Faithorne and Newcourt’s 1658 Exact Delineation of London,  Early Modern Studies Conference, University of Reading, July 2011

New seeds from strange countries: revisiting the origins of the English obsession with gardening,  Centre for Renaissance and Early Modern Studies Conference, Birmingham, June 2011

Dr Faustus and the Aztecs: power politics and the transmission of horticultural knowledge in the early modern period, Institute of Historical Research, May 2011

Class and Space in Early Modern London, JOUHS Colloquium, Trinity College, Oxford, May 2011 

‘Stinking Ditches’ to ‘Princely Walks’: the dislocation of open spaces of early modern London, Early Modern Dislocation Conference, Northumbria University, January 2010

Embroidered Knots: connections and interactions in the gardens and open spaces of Elizabethan and Jacobean London,  Institute of Historical Research, June 2009

New views and nostalgia: the Copperplate Map and its derivatives, Birkbeck, Jan 2009

Gardening and the Middling Sort in early modern London,  Geffrye Museum Symposium, May 2008

The Countess’s Tangerines: seventeenth century consumerism in the garden, Holland Park House, April 2008