Local artist and writer Freda Cox is celebrating the success of her third published book Garden Styles – An Essential Guide, which went on sale in September and has been met with enthusiasm from garden lovers and artists alike.
Freda has lived in Shropshire for most of her life and specialises in painting and writing about plants and gardens, as well as being an avid gardener. She attended Ludlow High School, where she developed a great love of the countryside and its flora. This led to a passion for plants and gardening, and Freda has created many gardens, the latest of which is at her home outside Broseley where she is just beginning to create a new, small garden, in a corner of an old maze. Her botanical watercolours have been likened to Redoute and William Morris and designs have been commissioned for textiles, greetings cards, wedding stationary, porcelain, and house and gift wares.
This is Freda’s third book, and covers very different and inspirational styles from around the world. The book encourages readers to create their own unique style whether their garden is large or small, in the town or country.
Exploring garden styles from ancient to modern, the book covers important historical aspects of evolving styles, right up to ideas and suggestions for the future. Chapters include Classical, Informal, Cottage, Mediterranean and Dry, Exotic and sub-Tropical, Japanese, Islamic, Modern, Water, Small, and Gardens of the Future. There are details of gardens to visit, including many in the Midlands, extensive plant lists, and an illustrated directory of over 200 plants.
The book is lavishly illustrated with over 250 colour photographs, and 200 drawings and botanical watercolours A number of the gardens mentioned or photographed in the book are in Shropshire including: Apple Cross House, Alveley; Arley Arboretum; Bridgwalton House, Morville; Chyknell, Bridgnorth; Dorothy Clive Gardens, Market Drayton; and Preen Manor, Church Stretton. The front cover photo is of Dr Katherine Swift’s garden at the Dower House, Morville Hall. Obviously Garden Styles covers a wide subject so there are also mentions/photos/illustrations of gardens from across the world as well. Freda Cox explained to What’s What that her two previous books, Designing and Creating a Mediterranean Garden, and Seasons in a Country Garden, had been well received and she has also contributed to various other books including The Watercolour Flower Painter’s Handbook by Patricia Seligman and the Beginner’s Guide to Water Gardening, by Graham Clarke. She has been personally profiled in a number of books and publications both in the UK and abroad; has taken part in radio and television programmes; organised exhibitions for the RHS and as a past UK Branch Head of The Mediterranean Garden Society for many years, she remains a regular contributor to their quarterly journal.
Garden Styles is published by Crowood Press, and is widely available in bookshops.