Fergus Garrett and the Great Dixter Charitable Trust see the Christopher Lloyd Bursary as a way of giving something back to the horticultural world by creating opportunities for trainee or young gardeners to widen their experience and gain inspiration from experts in the UK or abroad by travelling to, and/or learning in, horticulturally interesting places, attending courses and conferences and studying plants in the wild.

A meadow captured by Michael Wachter on a trip to Slovenia funded by The Christopher Lloyd Bursary

Nurseries who attend the Great Dixter Plant Fairs support the fund by giving 10% of their takings.

Applications are invited for up to a maximum of £1,500 with preference being given to applicants who might struggle to find funding from established organsations or institutes (Kew or Wisley applicants should first approach their own bursary providers). Applications with connections to the style of gardening and ethos of Great Dixter are preferred.

How to apply:

For travel, please provide a CV and a description of your trip, including planned expenditure. We would also like to know where else you have applied and how much of the trip you plan to fund yourself.

Successful applicants will be required to write about their experience within a month of their return. This could be in the form of a written report, a blog, an Instagram feed or other means but ideally something that can be shared on Dixter’s social media or website! They may also be asked to come and give a short talk to Great Dixter staff and Friends.

For training, please provide details of the course or conference you wish to attend, potential expenditure (including travel) and a short explanation of how the training will benefit you.

Successful applicants will be asked to send in a photo of themselves along with a brief paragraph about their training for our website.

To discuss the application process further or to apply please email: [email protected]

Deadlines for applications during the year are 1st April and 1st October. Applications will only be considered at these times.

Applicants will be informed of the decisions within two weeks of the deadlines. Only applications from EU residents are accepted.

In 2019 we awarded £500 to Jo Wilson (shown left) who qualified with distinction in her postgraduate diploma in garden design, with the British Academy of Garden Design.

“Great Dixter was generous enough to award me with half the course costs, so I wanted to get in touch as soon as possible. I am overjoyed, having completed the course in 15 months; it’s been intense, but extremely rewarding, and it means I can now begin my garden design, consultancy and maintenance business in earnest; with a particular focus on biodiversity and sustainability.”

Previous awards

Jo Wilson, Garden Design Course, August 2020, £500 Rebecca Lane at the Alhambra funded by the Christopher Lloyd Bursary

Michael Wachter, Slovenia, May 2018, £300

Lisa Rue, Slovenia, May 2018, £160.

Rosie Anderson, Slovenia May 2018, £300.

Jamie McCormick, Himalayas, August 2017, £600

Eve Halliday, USA, July 2017, £600

Josh Taylor, RHS level 2 course, June 2017, £600

David Bull, USA, May 2017, £400

Christina Clowser, Italy, April 2017, £400

Harry Baldwin, USA, April 2017, £200

Rebecca Lane, Alhambra and Sierra Nevada, April 2017, £600 (shown right)

Olivia Steed- Munden, USA, April 2017, £200

Christina Clowser on a trip to Italy funded by the Christopher Lloyd Bursary

Christina Clowser in Italy 

In autumn 2012 Sean Harkin who worked at RHS Wisley and is now Head Gardener at the Inner Temple gardens received a grant to visit the USA. His trip included a week working on the High Line, visits to Brooklyn Botanic Garden, New York Botanic Garden, Wave Hill and community gardens around the New York area as well as Chanticleer Garden in Philadelphia.  Upon his return he gave a talk to students, staff and volunteers which was recorded by gardener Lewis Bosher and can be seen here.

You can also download his report here.

In October 2011 Hannah Wilson who works at the Himalayan Garden in North Yorkshire received £1500 to visit Vietnam on a plant hunting expedition with Alan Clarke. On her return she visited Great Dixter with her family to speak to the Friends about her trip.

 2017 contributing nurseries:

Barnhaven Botanic Nurseries, Binny Plants, Chris Cooke Plants, Copton Ash, Cotswold Garden Flowers, Daisy Roots, Edulis, F comme Fleurs, John French, Hardy’s Cottage Garden, Invicta Herbs, Der Kleine Plantage, Laurels Nursery, Lime Cross Nursery, Low Wood Nursery, Monksilver Nursery, Old Court Nursery, Pelham Plants, Pheasant Acre, Plantbase, Polystichum Heritage Collection, Rapkyns Nursery