What Makes Bob Flowerdew Tick? Get to Know our Guest Speaker

Bob Flowerdew is an incredible man with an incredible past and we are thrilled to have him as guest speaker at The Botanic Secret Garden Ball, in association with Bloodwise. Having previously been a chicken giblet washer (soon advanced to frozen chicken packer), installation engineer, demolition engineer, council care-home cleaner, dog impersonator and glass fibre laminator, Bob has done a heck of a lot and, along with his enthusiasm for horticulture, this is what makes him a thrilling and inspiring speaker, not to be missed.

What Makes Bob Flowerdew Tick? Get to Know our Guest Speaker

Bob cites gardening, scented plants and good food has his passions. Born a farmer’s son, he has always loved the natural world and would rather be outside – if not in a library – than anywhere else. He first started lecturing on organic and other gardening subjects to various groups and, although he professed, and practised, organic methods, he did not wish to be uninformed so he studied conventional methodology, passing theoretical and practical examinations in pesticide use at Otley Agricultural College. He now grows every fruit, vegetable and scented plant possible, for his family’s consumption, to the highest Organic Standards.


In addition, Bob is a prolific writer and has made regular appearances on national television and radio throughout his career, including previously presenting for BBC 2’s Gardeners’ World as their organic fruit and vegetable expert under Geoff Hamilton.


Twenty years ago, Bob joined BBC Radio 4’s prestigious ‘Gardeners’ Question Time panel, where he still concentrates on fruits, vegetables, organic methods and scented plants. He also writes for journals at home and abroad, particularly Amateur Gardening, Kitchen Garden Magazine and BBC Gardeners World Magazine.


You may not know this, but as well as BBC recordings, horticultural talks, prize givings and after dinner engagements, Bob regularly performs his own one man theatre show of hard core horticultural anecdote, comedy and home spun verse – which makes us even more excited to see what he has in store for us on 11th May.


When asked about speaking at the first Botanic Secret Garden Ball, Bob said, ‘I’m pleased and honoured to be the first speaker at such a prestigious and worthy event at one of the countries best botanical gardens’. His talk will,‘light heartedly pour scorn on gardeners’ and horticultures ‘accepted advice’, suggesting much of it is not actually wrong, but has become inappropriate. Experts should be listened to but seldom followed’. On top of this, Bob will also help you with your own gardening woes, answering any questions and offering advice, helping ensure your produce is the best it can be.


We only have a few tables remaining, so do get in touch if you would like to book tickets. You can contact either admin@birminghambotanicalgardens.org.uk or 0121 454 1860. Alternatively, you can pay on the event page – The Botanic Secret Garden Ball.