Maggie Campbell-Culver

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Maggie Campbell-Culver is a garden and plant historian, and a Fellow of The Linnaean Society of London. She has worked on a number of gardens in Sussex and Cornwall, and was the Garden Conservationist at Fishbourne Roman Palace near Chichester. In Cornwall Maggie undertook the garden and landscape restoration of Mount Edgcumbe Country Park.[1]

In September 2001, she published The Origin of Plants, a chronology of the plants introduced to Britain, and the people who have shaped Britain’s garden history from the earliest times.[2][3][4] The book was short-listed for a Guild of Garden Writers Award, and the paperback edition was published in Spring 2004. It is held in the collections of more than 200 libraries around the world,[5] and is frequently quoted in gardening articles in magazines and newsletters.[6]

Campbell-Culver was one of the editors for the 2006 edition of The Oxford Companion to the Garden and has contributed to the Insight Guide Great Gardens of Britain and Ireland . She is a contributor to English Heritage Handbook on Management of Historic Parks, Gardens and Landscapes. She is a frequent contributor to the Eden Project Friends magazine, and has had articles published in Country Life , The Tablet, The Countryman as well as the French magazine Britmag.

A Passion for Trees, the Legacy of John Evelyn is Campbell-Culver’s second book and was published in 2006.[7] This focuses on Evelyn’s 1664 book Sylva A Discourse of Forest Trees and commemorates the tercentenary of Evelyn’s death.[8] A keynote lecture was given to the Linnaean Society (May 2006), as well as to Plant Heritage (NCCPG), Surrey Gardens Trust, and the Eden Project.

Campbell-Culver is a consultant to Lewes District Council for their project on the John Evelyn Heritage Centre at Southover Grange. Campbell-Culver has also written the book Directions for the Gardiner and Other Horticultural Advice which was published by OUP in May 2009.

She has completed a book entitled Charlemagne and his Flora. The Foundation of European Cooking. This book describes the eighty-nine plants which in the year 800 the Emperor ordered to be grown on all Imperial land throughout his kingdom to feed the travelling court, the army, and to help avoid famine. She asserts that the chosen plants laid the foundation of modern European cooking.

Campbell-Culver has given a series of plant talks on local radio in Brittany, where she also lectures. She has completed a lecture tour in Ireland[9] and is a frequent contributor to BBC Radio 4's Woman’s Hour. She has also lectured at the Edinburgh Book Festival, Dartington Festival, and the Garden History Society, and she is a Royal Horticultural Society Regional Lecturer. Campbell-Culver is a founder member of Plant Heritage (NCCPG), and has been involved for many years with the Garden History Society and latterly the Gardens Trust movement.

Published books

  • The Origin of Plants. The People and Plants That Have Shaped Britain's Garden History[3][10]
  • A Passion for Trees, The Legacy of John Evelyn[11]
  • Directions for the Gardiner, and Other Horticultural Advice. OUP


  1. ^ Newsletter. The Society. 1982. p. 137. 
  2. ^ Chris Bird (24 April 2014). The Fundamentals of Horticulture: Theory and Practice. Cambridge University Press. pp. 289–. ISBN 978-0-521-70739-8. 
  3. ^ a b Hobkirk, Charles Oodrington Pressick; Porritt, George Taylor; Roebuck, William Denison; Clarke, William Eagle; Waite, Edgar Ravenswood; Sheppard, Thomas; Woodhead, Thomas William (1999). The Naturalist. Simpkin, Marshall and Company. p. 146. 
  4. ^ "Tis the season to be reading". The Scotsman, 02 December 2001
  5. ^ ". The origin of plants : the people and plants that have shaped Britain's garden history since the year 1000"], WorldCat.
  6. ^ "New Neighbourhood", Newsletter of the Slovenian Union of America.
  7. ^ Wulf, Andrea. "A Passion For Trees: The Legacy of John Evelyn by Maggie Campbell-Culver". The Guardian.
  8. ^ "Book reviews". Historic Gardens Review.
  9. ^ "Well Worth a Read", 89 April 03, Newsletter of the Irish Garden Plant Society
  10. ^ "Now Available for the Patio: A Prehistoric Relic". By Adrian Higgins Washington Post , December 21, 2006
  11. ^ "Diary", Gillian Darley, London Review of Books
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