A prolific designer, Jinny Blom embraces a wide variety of styles, from formal walled gardens to contemporary installations. What defines her work is her skill with plants and her ability to create a garden that responds to the history of the site and the wider landscape. In The Thoughtful Gardener, Jinny shares her insight into the creative process she has developed while designing more than 250 gardens around the world.
The gardens Jinny creates are as different as their owners and their locations. Small gardens are very intimate and have to work efficiently in order to be pleasing. An Oxfordshire garden of rooms is constructed from nothing, creating a new garden with an old soul. There are modern takes on traditional forms.
But all these gardens share a commitment to beautiful craftsmanship and considered planting. Structure and detail are important, and receive close attention. The styles vary considerably – logical, calm, beautiful, romantic, naturalistic, formal, sometimes spare – but the principles remain firm. Jinny designs for the long term, with consideration for the environment; these gardens are built to last. Reflecting Jinny's highly individual character, there is plenty of wit and quirkiness alongside the expert knowledge, and it will appeal to the widest audience of garden lovers. Thoughtful and beautiful, yet practical and informative, The Thoughtful Gardener marries artistry with functionality.
Jinny Blom is a leading garden designer who began her London based landscape design practice in 2000. Jinny works on a wide range of projects and has designed hundreds of gardens all over the world. Her innovative and uniquely thoughtful work has been much lauded and featured in the press internationally. She has designed four award-winning gardens for the RHS Chelsea Flower Show and was awarded the coveted gold medal in 2007; along with silver-gilts in 2002 (for her 'Healing Garden' developed in collaboration with The Prince of Wales); in 2006 (for Laurent-Perrier); and in 2013 (for her creation commissioned by Prince Harry's charity, Sentebale). The great-granddaughter of an Impressionist painter, Jinny had a Liberal Arts education in the UK. She trained and practised as a transpersonal psychologist and psychotherapist, working for many years in mental health. In 1996 she chose to devote herself to her lifelong interest in natural landscapes and gardens. She has been a columnist for The Times, contributed regularly to radio and television worldwide, and in 2002 won BBC Radio Broadcaster of the Year for her Radio 4 Woman's Hour features. Jinny has been nominated Woman of the Year an unprecedented three times – in 2002, 2007 and 2013 - for her services to society including her role as Artist in Residence at Chelsea & Westminster Hospital.
"The most romantic, creative person in garden design I know."
– Piet Oudolf
"Jinny's genius is to marry a beautiful vision to an extraordinary empathy with the landscape into which that vision will fit, resulting in a pastoral harmony second to none"
– Victoria, Lady Getty
"(She) is a bona fide horticultural celebrity."
– Wall Street Journal
"Written with wit and insight, it sets out an approach to design that is intuitive, thoughtful and holistic – a philosophy that is clearly successful and clearly manifest in this designer's beautifully executed gardens. It is a book that will make you think about design, about landscape and nature, and about the benefits of engaging with a garden yourself."
– House & Garden
"The Thoughtful Gardener, at once a lavishly illustrated coffee-table tome and a friendly hands-on primer, offers a glimpse into some of the most magical gardens in the world [...]"
– Architectural Digest US
"Landscaper Jinny Blom's long-awaited book is so beautiful that you will not want to rush it. As the title suggests, there is more to this than lovely photography: the pages of The Thoughtful Gardener will stop you in your tracks and make you think about the potential of gardens, in a way that has never struck you before."
"Alas, the world has been offered a publication on garden design that is written in neither a cookbook nor a "how to" format. Rather, The Thoughtful Gardener, by Jinny Blom, is more like a treasure map. It is a window, or in some cases, a panoramic view into the thought processes that should precede all garden design. With an emphasis on historical precedent and sensitivity to the local vernacular, Jinny, most eloquently, takes the reader on an odyssey through the conception, development and execution of each creation. This coupled with her extensive working knowledge of both plant and building materials, not to mention her unbridled imagination (and sense of humor) the reader can expect to close this book enlightened, amused and inspired. A timeless, horticultural manifesto!"
– Gunner Peterson
"A detailed and richly illustrated account of how one of the UK's leading practitioners approaches the art of garden design."
– Gardens Illustrated
"The Thoughtful Gardener is the most beautiful and stimulating and enlivening gardening book I have ever seen."
– Adam Nicolson