Skip to Content

Articles, News & Updates

5 minutes with Tom Turner ( October 2012)

Tom Turner is an English landscape architect, garden designer and garden historian teaching at the University of Greenwich in London. He is the author of books and articles on landscape and gardens and is the editor of the Garden History Reference Encyclopedia CD and the online Gardens Guide. Educated at the Universities of St Andrews and Edinburgh, he studied landscape architecture under Frank Clarke. His latest book British Gardens is out in April 2013

1. What do you think is the most exciting development in landscape architecture at the moment?

Design methods, having advanced from 2D to 3D, with help from CAD, is now advancing to 4D, with help from Geographical Information Systems. Landscape designs can look back to the distant past and forward to imagined futures.

2. What are your 3 favorite landscape architecture books?

Jellicoe, GA and S The Landscape of Man
Whyte, WH The Last Landscape
Hough, M City Form and Natural Process

3. What made you choose to have a career in landscape architecture, and what would you be doing now if you had gone down a different path?
A love of photography, painting and landscapes. I guess I would have been a town planner or architect if not a landscape architect

4. What advice would you give to aspiring landscape architects?

Don't wait for people to give you commissions: persuade the public, organisations and clients that they can and should have better designed landscapes


5. Sum up the profession in 3 words.

Sublime, Ridiculous, Fascinating


Related Products

  1. British Gardens

    History, philosophy and design

    By Tom Turner

    Garden design began in West Asia and spread through Europe. This book tells how, in the British Isles, it flourished to an extraordinary degree. Following the historical method in Tom Turner’s books on Asian gardens (2010) and European gardens (2011), it uses almost 1000 colour photographs,...

    Published June 25th 2013 by Routledge

  2. European Gardens

    History, Philosophy and Design

    By Tom Turner

    Garden design and usage has been a feature of human civilization as far back as Neolithic times, when the first gardens began to be used for residential, horticultural and sacred tasks. Tom Turner follows the entire history of the European garden from its prehistoric roots right up to the present...

    Published May 6th 2011 by Routledge

  3. Asian Gardens

    History, Beliefs and Design

    By Tom Turner

    The gardens made on the fringes of Central Asia in the past 5000 years form a great arc. From the Fertile Crescent, it runs west to Europe and east to China and Japan. Asia's fringe was a zone of interchange: a vast landscape in which herders encountered farmers and the design of symbolic gardens...

    Published August 11th 2010 by Routledge