Accomplished botanical painter and inveterate traveller, Marianne North (1830-1890) led an unconventional life capturing the essence of rare plants. Born in Hastings, the daughter of an MP, she initially contented herself with the wild flowers of England, but after the death of first her mother and then her father her pursuit of plants took her round the world. Japan, Java, Ceylon, Canada, India, Brazil and Jamaica were just some of the countries she penetrated into the remote regions in search of rarities. Discovering and being honoured with the naming of such plants as Crinum northianum, Nepenthes northiana. This talk will explore both the life and social context of Marianne North, including an examination of why her paintings troubled.deeply conservative Victorian society and the eventual creation of her gallery.

Dr Twigs Way

Garden historian, author, researcher and lecturer. She presented Lost Gardens for Channel 4 and has appeared on Gardeners’ World as well as making media appearances on a wide range of garden history related topics. Carries out freelance research in the history of specific gardens and parks for bodies such as English Heritage, the National Trust and various private clients, and has a specific interest in the portrayal of plants and gardens in art and literature and the social aspects of garden history. Her publications include A History of Women in the Garden, the highly illustrated A Nation of Gardeners, and a short biography of Gertrude Jekyll, as well as the quirky History of Garden Gnomes! Currently working on the Eighteenth Century Diaries of the Marchioness Grey of Wrest Park and is also involved in the 2016 tercentenary celebrations of one of our greatest landscape designers Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown.