SEPTEMBER is just around the corner and that means the serious business of the countdown to this year’s Malvern Autumn Show can begin.
Heading up the celebrity guest list at the show on Saturday and Sunday, September 27 and 28, will be the hugely popular television gardener, Monty Don.
The renowned writer and presenter, who is best known for fronting the team of experts behind popular weekly gardening programme, BBC Gardeners' World, will be at the show on Sunday when he will join fellow gardeners Joe Swift and Mark Diacono, and will be talking to Joe, live on stage, in the event's Good Life Pavilion about all things gardening.
Monty, who lives in neighbouring Herefordshire, was born in 1955 and brought up in Hampshire where he gardened from a young age.
He was educated at a variety of schools and at Magdalene College, Cambridge, and from the early 1980s he and his wife Sarah set up and ran a jewellery business which enjoyed a great flurry of success in the mid-Eighties but folded in 1990 just as Monty’s television and writing career was taking off.
He has famously said that he "learned much more from the failure of our business, than I did from its success."
He first appeared on television in 1989 on This Morning and continued as its regular gardening expert for another eight years.
He has presented gardening and travel programmes for over 20 years and became the lead presenter for the BBC flagship programme, Gardeners' World, between 2003 and 2008, and then again from 2011 when he began hosting Gardeners' World from his home - Longmeadow in Herefordshire.
Other TV credits include, Tomorrow's World, Fork to Fork, Real Gardens, Lost Gardens Around The World In 80 Gardens, Growing Out Of Trouble, My Dream Farm and Mastercrafts.
Last year he presented a series on Italian Gardens on BBC Two which was followed earlier this year by another on French Gardens
He is a prolific journalist and was the Observer's gardening editor from 1994 until 2006 and now writes a regular column for the Daily Mail and Gardeners' World Magazine.
He has written over 20 books including the best selling Fork to Fork, The Sensuous Garden, The Jewel Garden (with Sarah Don) and The Complete Gardener.
A committed organic gardener and president of the Soil Association, he has worked with schools, and groups of drug addicts to build respect and reward from working with the natural world and has a strong belief in the importance of communities working together through an understanding and love of the land.
He says: "The real importance of gardening is the empowerment that it gives people, however small or seemingly insignificant their gardens might be. It is surprising how liberating it is, if you can grow anything at all - and there is as much pleasure in a snowdrop as in a successful career."
The Malvern Autumn Show, which is a charming celebration of gardening, food and nostalgia, and the British Harvest, also presents the perfect opportunity to do a spot of early Christmas shopping.
Other show highlights include - Grow/Harvest It: Take inspiration from three feature gardens on display in the Good Life Pavilion this year or head over to the experts at the UK National Giant Vegetables Championship to find out how to grow your very own monster vegetables. Don't forget to stop by the RHS Flower Show to pick up some beautiful plants and check out the magnificent Floral Art exhibition in Wye Hall.
Relive It: For those looking to recapture the past, the Nostalgia Area is just the ticket. Why not pick up your dancing shoes and head to the dance floor, or if a sedate afternoon tea is more your style, seek refreshment from the Vintage Tea Room. There will be an array of vintage vehicles on display and demonstrations of forgotten skills.
Experience It: There's lots to experience at the show, and something for the whole family! From dog agility and aeroplane stunt shows to poultry competitions and an eclectic mix of entertainment over the weekend for all ages.
And finally you can - Taste It: Sample and buy some home cooking ingredients from the display of local and regional produce in the expansive food and drink areas at the show. There will be a wonderful selection of Britain’s finest foods on offer including delicious cheeses, drink, delicatessen and pastries. The Wot’s Cooking team will be heading up the Cookery Theatre with talented chefs conjuring up delicious dishes guaranteed to melt your taste buds.