Information: Cliff Booker has been heavily involved with alpines since 1984. He was the founder of the East Lancashire Group of the AGS in 1986 and has been either the Secretary or the Chair of the Group ever since. Cliff is a Gold Medal and double Farrer Medal winning exhibitor at AGS Shows and with his wife Sue, has led wildflower walks for Collett’s Mountain Holidays in the Dolomites for nearly fifteen years. Cliff has lectured to many Alpine Garden Society Local Groups and to numerous clubs, groups and societies across the UK. The year 2010 featured a NARGS sponsored Lecture Tour of Eastern USA and Canada, while November 2012 saw three lectures to the Flemish Rock Garden Club in Belgium, and the couple completed a highly successful ten-venue lecture tour of South Island, New Zealand in November 2013. A Scottish Rock Garden Club sponsored tour of seven Groups followed in 2014 - prior to lectures in British Columbia and Calgary, Canada.
Cliff specialises in growing and exhibiting members of the family Ranunculaceae - and, in particular, the beautiful high mountain ranunculus that inhabit the loftiest peaks of Europe, North America and New Zealand.
Cliff is co-author with David Charlton of ‘Mountain Flowers - The Dolomites’, a beautifully illustrated field guide to many of the lovely species that grow in the meadows, woods, rocks and screes of these magnificent mountains.
All lectures are between 60 and 70 minutes long
1. An Introduction to Alpines - Created for raw beginners and experienced gardeners alike, this digital presentation starts with the basics and then delves into all the fascinating aspects of our magnificent horticultural hobby.
2. Cream of Alpines - Examines a host of alpine species, genera, locations, memories and people who have influenced my hobby/obsession over the past thirty plus years.
3. Definitive Dolomites (Option 1) - Features many hundreds of images illustrating the amazing landscapes, fauna and (especially) the fabulous flora of these magnificent Italian mountains. Option One features a ninety minute long presentation with a built-in intermission to allow for refreshments, comfort break, etc.
4. Definitive Dolomites (Option 2) - As above, but in condensed form - lasting 65 minutes with no break. Still brimming with amazing flowers and beautiful scenery.
5. The Peloponnese and Crete - A combined presentation that features two of the most idyllic and floristic locations in Greece. A host of orchids, anemones and abundant Mediterranean flora.
6. Outstanding Gardens – Home and Away (Part One) - Explores up to twenty amazing and diverse gardens from the USA, Europe, New Zealand and the UK. Predominantly alpine, these selections will also include unknown, unusual and unique estates that inspire, educate and amaze.
7. Outstanding Gardens – Home and Away (Part Two) - Up to twenty further gardens from around the world - all beautifully illustrated.
8. Zion to Neon – An American Road Trip - Follows our journey from Utah through Arizona, Nevada and California to Vegas looking at the amazing diversity of scenery and fauna - and especially the incredible flowers - that we discovered along the way.
9. North American Rock Garden Tour 2010 - A journey through Eastern USA and Canada that follows our whistle-stop NARGS lecture tour of 2010 and looks at gardens in New York State, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Newfoundland, Illinois, Wisconsin, Virginia, Washington DC and North Carolina - and we meet some of the incredible gardeners that keep the cultivation of alpines to the fore in the States.
10. Tromso Botanic Garden and the Lofoten Islands - Widely regarded as one of the foremost alpine gardens in the world, we hope this presentation will ratify, demonstrate and endorse this perception. We explore the excellence and glory of this horticultural mecca before touring Arctic Norway and the unbelievable beauty and diverse flora of the Lofoten Islands. Please note: This presentation should be available from early 2017.
Fee: B plus fuel at cost. Overnight accommodation appreciated for Sue and I where necessary.
Equipment: Cliff will bring his own digital projector, laptop and extension leads. Will require large screen, projector stand or small table please - and a microphone if considered necessary.