Hot Topics April 2015

MEETING – 20th April 2015

Joanna Cardwell (our President) welcomed 91 members and 4 guests to the meeting.

Our main event was a highly interesting and enjoyable talk from Tom Hart Dyke, plant hunter and renowned gardener from Lullingstone Castle, near Sevenoaks. Tom first shot to international prominence in 2000, when on a plant hunting expedition in the Colombian jungle that went dangerously wrong. Tom and his travelling companion, Paul Winder, were kidnapped while trekking through ‘The Darien Gap’ and held for nine months. During their time in captivity, they were subjected to numerous threats, including death. Faced with the latter, Tom spent what he thought would be his last day on earth designing plans for his dream garden containing plants he’d collected from across the globe, planted out in their respective countries of origin. Luckily for Tom, Paul and their families, the boys were not executed, but were released in time for Christmas 2000. Tom’s idea for a World Garden has now been translated into reality at his Lullingstone home. We were enthralled by his tremendous enthusiasm and the beautiful pictures of rare plants (including the most gorgeous orchids) he found on his expeditions, as well as ones from the World Garden he has created at Lullingstone.