Taking you on a journey through nineteenth-century British gardens, The Sweet Pea Man is a minutely researched biography of the Victorian plant hybridist Henry Eckford and his life as a breeder of the famous Grandiflora sweet peas.
Born and brought up in Scotland, Henry started as a garden apprentice at Lord Lovat’s Beaufort Castle. After working his way through the gardens of Penicuik House and Fingask Castle, Henry moved to England and bred pelargoniums and dahlias in the garden of the Earl of Radnor, for which he became famous and could then begin his lifework on the cross-breeding of sweet peas which he refined in Wem in Shropshire.
Not only a biography of Henry Eckford, this book is filled with detailed, scientific descriptions of the fascinating world of plants.
A professional gardener for thirty-seven years, Graham Martin began at Kelsey Park, Beckenham in 1964, studying day-release at the Kent College of Horticulture and later full time at the Somerset College of Horticulture. At the same time, he had a long career in athletics as a club and county distance runner. In 1991 he graduated in American Studies at the University of Aberystwyth in Wales. He now lives near Selkirk in Scotland and lectures on Henry Eckford.