Journey to Dreamtime

The professor takes Sophie, Dylan and their two pets Monty and Naomi on a wild adventure

The professor takes Sophie, Dylan and their two pets Monty and Naomi on a wild adventure

I’ve been writing this blog for a few years now, in addition with my wonderful co-host Ann we have been interviewing the fascinating people we find for our podcast

Last year I was asked if we might develop a learning aid for children based on how we grow food, develop sustainable approaches to agriculture and cope with modern city life. I agreed because I felt we do need to help this planet of ours every so often.

After much thinking coupled with the odd glass of wine – I’m fairly partial to a nice burgundy. This along with late night chats with friends and my lovely wife the small light bulb ( well it has to be an LED these days) began to flicker.

“Why not make the learning an adventure story?”

Journey to Dreamtime was born, currently available as an eBook it will soon be available as a paperback, you can see more here…


Now available in a paperback, you can order either on Amazon or from BookLocker

Please do let me know what you think…. book two is going to be based in America.

Thank you.

An interview with Jenny Peterson

Cancer Survivors Garden Companion1

Ann and I were fortunate to interview Jenny Peterson, just after her new book was published. Jenny is an amazing, extremely positive lady who is an inspiration for us all.

A Garden that Heals
Pittsburgh, Pa. (October 5, 2015): When Jenny Peterson was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2012, it rocked her world. Her cancer treatment was hard, emotional and often deeply depressing. But Peterson, a garden designer and Master Gardener, did not let the cancer diagnosis define her. She used her desire to garden and dig in the dirt again to pull her out of the darkness. And she discovered that gardening is good medicine –for the body, mind and spirit.
The Cancer Survivor’s Garden Companion: Cultivating Hope, Healing and Joy in the Ground Beneath Your Feet
(St. Lynn’s Press, January 2016) tells Peterson’s story and explores the therapeutic benefits of this vital “earth connection,” including inspirational profiles of other cancer survivors, both men and women, whose gardens became their partners in healing.

With gentle empathy, beautiful photographs and easy how-to steps, Peterson shows others how to create their own backyard haven for healing – a personal restorative garden – with well-grounded guidance about diet, exercise, mental focus and spiritual renewal. Her book adds a fresh voice to the growing fields of horticultural therapy and therapeutic gardens.

What others are saying about The Cancer Survivor’s Garden Companion:

“Jenny’s tips for incorporating gardening into your life for mind, body, and spiritual health are ingenious! As a cancer coach, I will definitely be suggesting this book to my clients.” – Susan Gonzalez, BSN, CPCC, co-author of 100 Perks of Having Cancer Plus 100 Health Tips for Surviving It, and editor of The Savvy Sister blog
“Jenny’s beautiful book reminds us all that life can be found in the healing, meditative act of gardening. By lovingly tending a garden, we can learn to nurture ourselves, restoring our mind, body and spirit in the process.” – Ray Anne Evans, Executive Director, Breast Cancer Resource Centers of Texas
“Jenny’s connection with gardening, garden design, and simply being in nature remained strong throughout her cancer diagnosis, treatment, and recovery. In fact, it was part of what helped her through. And now she is helping others to learn from her powerful experience.” – Naomi A. Sachs, Founding Director, Therapeutic Landscapes Network; co-author, Therapeutic Landscapes: An Evidence-Based Approach to Designing Healing Gardens and Restorative Outdoor Spaces
The Cancer Survivor’s Garden Companion will teach readers how to use the garden to heal, find hope and feel joy.
About the Author
Jenny Peterson is a landscape designer and Master Gardener specializing in xeriscaping and small urban spaces. She is a cancer survivor who found hope and healing in her garden, even during the darkest days of chemotherapy and radiation. In the process, she made deep connections with the cancer support community, including physicians, nutritionists, bodywork practitioners, psychologists and spiritual counselors. Peterson co-authored Indoor Plant Décor: The Design Stylebook for Houseplants (St. Lynn’s Press, 2013) with Kylee Baumle. She lives in Austin, Texas, with her fiancé, 19 chickens, two dogs, two quails and a goat.

You can listen to the interview here :   Interviewing Jenny Peterson

If you would like to purchase the book : The Cancer Survivors Garden Companion

The right-sized Flower Garden

Kerry Mendez has a passion for gardening, in her latest book “The right-sized Flower Garden” she discusses how to develop a garden that you can manage, often this will reduce the amount of work involved. As she explains it’s all about making the right choices, whilst at the same time making simple design changes. Here is a practical book with sensible tips, lists, time and energy saving suggestions that will help the beginner and the experienced.

Come take a listen, I’m sure you will learn something new.

The right-sized flower garden

How we look at Food Tourism today

Ann and I interviewed John Stanley of John Stanley Associates  recently about his new book, he jointly wrote with his wife Linda,

 Food Tourism – A Practical Marketing Guide.

Food tourism

The fastest growth in tourism today is the culinary sector.

Listen to John as he explains the overall direction of food tourism, including how he sees future development.

A few snip bits:

Do you grow soil?

25% of the food we buy comes from 2% of the farmland around our cities, which is being swallowed up by development.

Farmers used to make 38 cents on every dollar now its down to an average of just 6 cents

Eating local seasonal food saves you around 25%, and is actually healthier for you!

You can hear this really informative interview here (click below) or on iTunes at Growing Trends

Are you growing herbs & veggies at home?

There has been quite a revival or is it renaissance  in growing herbs and vegetables at home recently ?

The beauty of growing at home is that the gardener knows where this food has come from, what he has used to grow it.

Square Foot Gardening

The produce tends to be fresh, packed full of nutrients, tastes delicious. More and more people are joining in this healthy pursuit.

There are a number of experts in the field of 'How to Grow ' today we are interviewing  the Square Foot Garden Guru – Mel Bartholomew

Square Foot Gardening

It's been a few years since Mel introduced us to his space saving vegetable and herb growing system.

Today it seems even more appropriate as a way to "Garden in Less Space with Less Work using less Water".

We hope you enjoy this first interview with Mel, do let us know what you think and please send us your ideas, suggestions, comments and requests to

You can find out more about Mel's books Here

Ann & Chris

Growing Trends

You can also listen to the interview  on iTunes at Growing Trends.


Are we rediscovering a sense of community ?

Today’s interview is really fascinating, our friends Bill Sosinsky and Rich Sapienza of Energime University discuss, coming trends, in particular the growing sense of community involvement.

Community gardens – the modern name for an ‘Allotment’ is a case in point.

The growing popularity of farmers markets, are helping to provide locally grown produce, that is grown in season, rather than having all food always available. There are some real benefits to eating ‘for want of a better word’ the right vegetables for the season.

We talk about water usage and the changes coming. To how we will all have to change some of our habits in these new times. In the meantime we all need to reconnect with nature, spend time to just take a stroll in a garden or park.

tree lined

If you enjoy our interviews with these fascinating people, do drop us a line with ideas or suggestions to or better still like us on Facebook 

Ann & Chris

GT112 School Garden Projects have many positives, you can hear many of them here.


Is this really salad ? it tastes so good like this !

Ann & I were fortunate to talk to three amazing ladies from Tennessee a little while ago. They wanted to start a school garden at their school, here is their story, the school garden is now in its third year.

Raised beds

Some of the main points we heard were:-

It's essential to have teacher as well as parent support.

Take time to plan carefully

Initially growing from seed is harder , due to the school calendar. 

Choose plants that will fit into this schedule.

The children want to take ownership of their plants !

Educating children in the different choices of produce increases the varieties they will eat.

Children really take pride in taking home to their family the produce they have grown.

In a blind radish test, the children could tell which were home grown as opposed to store bought and much preferred home grown !

strawberry picking

Ann & I would love to hear from you.

If you would like us to put you in touch with these wonderful ladies,or if you would like more information on starting your own school garden just send us an email to Growing Trends and we will be in touch. If you would like us to interview you, send us a picture of your garden along with contact details, we will be adding a section to our web site specially on School garden projects.

Thank you Penny, Peggy and Emily, this was a fascinating interview.

Ann & Chris





GT103:Patti talks about her Bees & Bee keeping

Honey beePatti is one of those rare ladies, an expert bee keeper and a fascinating speaker. Listen to her explain the intricate lifestyle of the honey bee, it's truly fascinating and very educational.

We visited Patti at her lovely country home one Saturday morning.

GT101:Kelly’s Garden

Kelly was an inspiration, sitting in her beautiful garden was almost spellbinding.

Take a listen and tell us what you think ?

"Finding happiness in a garden – how it's done at the Kelly Gallery"



GT100:Iconic Gardens of Kansas City – a must visit when in town

Ann & Chris sit down with Duane Hoover horticulturist at the Kauffman Memorial Gardens Kauffman memorial garden 2 and then Jan Schall , Sanders Sosland Curator of Modern & Contemporary Art at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art. Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art