Susie is a freelance writer, photographer, author, lecturer and artist. A lifelong and passionate gardener, she spent 23 years at Chesters Walled Garden on Hadrian’s Wall making it a place much loved by visitors. Her free flowing planting style uses herbs, wildflowers, childhood plants and unusual perennials. She recently created a new garden in a hidden valley in Northumberland, each step of the way being shared with readers of the English Garden magazine in a 2 year long series on making a garden from scratch.
Susie uses materials from the surrounding land, and writes articles on these heritage skills – drystone walling, cobble laying, hurdle making and green woodworking.
A regular walker, Susie uses her walks on the hills of Northumberland in her observations for her Guardian Country Diary.
Susie contributes regular articles to the gardening press as well as designing gardens, running courses and lecturing widely (Listed in the RHS Register of Speakers). Susie has a wide range of photographs of herbs, unusual perennials, planting schemes, wildflowers, garden wildlife and northern gardens. She is Press and Publicity Officer for the National Gardens Scheme in Northumberland. The English Garden magazine followed the creation of her new garden in a major series over 2 years. Collaborative work with children’s book illustrator and printmaker Kim Lewis led to a Hay Meadows exhibition amongst other collaborations. Susie has been garden columnist for the Northumbrian magazine for fourteen years and the garden columnist for My Weekly magazine for seven.
As an artist herself, she is ideally placed for writing articles about artists and craftspeople, as seen in the Northumbrian. Recent articles for BBC Countryfile magazine include hay meadows, sheepdog breeding, garden moths and England's last hay rake makers.
Herbs: an illustrated guide (Southwater 2014); Origanum; The Herb marjoram (Plant Heritage 1999); Gardens of Northumberland and the Borders (Sanderson Books 2006); A Sense of Herbs (Cogito Books 2007); The Thyme Handbook co-author (Plant Heritage 2009); Ten Principles of Garden Design (Vivays 2013)