Any gardening title without ’gardening’ in its masthead inevitably
sounds a bit rum to a gnarled old gardener like me. I’m only just
getting over the shock of Gardens Illustrated when along comes neweden
(sic), offering similar garden pornography but this time created by
voguish names like Stephen Woodhams and beautifully art directed for the
next millennium by Michael Lyons.
To be honest, Campaign didn’t need to ask a Royal Horticultural Society
member like me to review it because I doubt very much that I and fellow
plant enthusiasts are the target market. We’re talking World of
Exteriors here, outdoor rooms and garden installations.
The subject matter is everything the design-conscious urban professional
could expect: patios, pots, decking, pebbles, roof gardens, window-boxes
and herbs. There’s a distinct lack of information about black spot,
aphids, pruning, heeling in or double digging. Even plants get squeezed
into a very few pages.
Neweden has pulled off a bit of a coup by bagging the practically
canonised Christopher Lloyd to write a regular column for new gardeners.
The first issue has articles on Venetian courtyard gardens, the Columbia
Road flower market and growing the latest designer salad leaves.
It would be easy to sneer but I love this. It has so little overlap with
the other gardening titles that I predict neweden will become a part of
Has it found a marketable niche? Well, 50 per cent of the people who
work with me have just bought a property. One of their motivations is to
have a bit of brown earth and blue sky they can make into their own
Neweden is only aiming for a circulation of 30,000. I reckon there are
more than enough punters just in Islington, Fulham, Chiswick and, yes,
Mapesbury, who’ll be coughing up for this.
Tess Alps is executive chairman of Drum PHD and has difficulty keeping
her fingernails presentable.