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Valfredda Perennials Seminar

After the experience and success of past editions, this year’s Event too will include the seminar on flowers and herbaceous perennials. Hosted and organized by the Valfredda Nursery, it comprises the contribution of important figures such as Fergus Garrett, head gardener of Great Dixter, the historic Annie Guilfoyle, Director of KLC School of Design of Hampton Court Palace and writer for the magazine Garden Illustrated, in tandem with Mauro Crescini, owner of Valfredda Nursery, European leader in production of herbaceous perennials.


The Valfredda Perennials Seminar was born with the aim of making a high-level, professional contribution on flowers and perennial grasses.
Fergus Garrett, the Head Gardener of Great Dixter, one of the most important gardens in the world, the wonderful Annie Guilfoyle, English garden designer and silver-medal winner at the Chelsea Flower Show, and Mauro Crescini, owner of Vivaio Valfredda, one of Europe’s more important horticulturists, have worked together to design a course that touches all the elements involved in the creation and management of a garden of herbaceous perennials.

Each of the personalities involved will talk on the subjects related to their skills, leading the listener along a single common thread that will culminate in a talk by Fergus Garrett, special guest of the event.
In order to bring about better contact between the participants and the speakers, there will be group sessions (of around 20 people) where participants can discuss the ideas presented.


Daily programme

9 to 10.30 am  Introduction – Fergus Garrett
The Gardener, a ‘maestro d’orchestra’ of greenery.
The Garden is an environment in constant movement that follows the natural rhythm of the seasons but where the gardener, through his compositional art and his sensitivity, brings life and harmony that is always new.
10:30 to 11:00 am Break

11 am to 12:30 pm Group – Mauro Crescini

Practical and technical aspects in selecting varieties for planting.
How our choices are never completely free but depend on our environment, the type of garden we want and the maintenance that we decide on.
12:30 to 1:45 pm Aperitif

1:45 to 3:15 pm Group – Fergus Garrett
The Gardener's point of view.
Lines, shapes, scents, colours and works, how they change and modify life in the garden over the seasons.
3:15 to 3:45 pm  Break

3:45 to 5:15 pm Group – Annie Guilfoyle
Between design philosophy and reality, when beauty, longevity and economic aspects come together.
The meeting point between our design philosophy, the client’s wishes, what the plants can offer us and high-quality, long-lasting work.

5:15 to 5:45 pm Conclusion – Fergus Garrett  Perceiving and experiencing the garden.
The garden is a living being that, if cultivated and loved, gives us emotions and sensations to be experienced through all the five senses. The garden cures the soul.

5:45  to 6:45 pm Tour of the nursery

6:45 pm  Closing remarks  

N.B: Only the introduction and the conclusion will involve all of the participants. Each participant will take part in each of the three groups (Mauro Crescini, Fergus Garrett and Annie Guilfoyle). The schedules are used to indicate the working time, but all of the three groups will always work simultaneously.

Fergus  Garrett

Fergus  Garrett

Fergus Garrett started to Great Dixter as Head Gardener and worked closely with Christopher Lloyd during an important period in the garden’s development.

Annie  Guilfoyle

Annie  Guilfoyle

Annie Guilfoyle is an award-winning designer and an RHS Chelsea Flower Show Silver Medal winner.

Mauro  Crescini

Mauro  Crescini

He heads the Valfredda Nursery, which was founded by his father.

Book your place!

The fee includes participation in the seminar, two coffee breaks and the aperitif at 12.30.
Each participant must reach Vivaio Valfredda independently. Participants are requested to commute in groups to avoid overcrowding of cars.