Welcome to The Garden Coach™

The Garden Coach


Advice and hands on training in your garden...



Despite, or perhaps because of, the wealth of books and television programmes on the subject, gardening can seem very complicated and confusing. Even to those of us Assessing the designthat have been doing it for years!

The Garden Coach™ explains and demonstrates all aspects of gardening simply and at a pace to suit the individual, whether a complete beginner or more advanced.

What WE do together:

Garden! Together, we can learn about design, planting styles, identifying plants, creating new gardens, improve existing ones, growing flowers & vegetables, learn how & when to prune, create exciting pots for the patio, recycle waste, how to control weeds & pests, how to encourage wildlife into the garden. And the most important art of all - how to relax & enjoy your garden!


What The Garden Coach™ DOES NOT do:

Force a garden style upon you. We work as a partnership to create the garden that you want. There are no expensive (and often unworkable) design plans. Together we create beautiful gardens through rough sketches and practical on-site evaluation. Happy with the design you have got? That’s fine, we just work together to improve & enhance the existing features.

What tools do I need to buy?

None. For the first session we will use what you have or, if you have none and for training purposes, these will be provided free of charge.

In fact, if you do not have any, it is better to wait and let us assess together exactly which tools are best for your requirements. If you like the tools we provide, many are for sale (new and unused!) and at a very competitive price.

Who IS The Garden Coach™?

The Garden Coach is John ShortlandJohn Shortland NDH, AIHort., a classically trained Head Gardener and owner of The Glyme Garden & Landscape Company™, he is passionate about gardening and plants in particular and has a wealth of experience behind him.

John has worked together with the owners of some very prestigious, private gardens in Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire. This has given him knowledge of practical and time efficient methods in all aspects of horticulture - from tiny patio gardens right through to creating new parklands. You can take advantage of this.

He has also been an advisor to the public at Chelsea Flower Shows and led the plant production team for a BBC Gardeners World Exhibition garden which won an acclaimed Royal Horticultural Society Silver Medal. He has also assisted with the construction of gardens for Channel 4 Television series ‘Garden Doctor’s’, working alongside designer Dan Pearson and, earlier, the late Geoff Hamilton.

John is an elected member of the Institute of Horticulture and of The Professional Gardener’s Guild, The Royal Horticultural Society and Henry Doubleday Research Association. He also serves on the Committee of the Oxfordshire Gardens Trust, a charity devoted to the promotion and welfare of gardens and parks within the county.

So what now?

Contact John to discuss your requirements. All sessions are individually tailored to suit your own needs and level of knowledge. Bookings can be made singly or, block booked for the whole or part year - giving you a wide range of skills needed for a beautiful garden.

After each session, which can be for individual gardeners or groups, worksheets giving specific information for your garden can be used as aide-memoires and kept for future reference.

To find out more, click here.


Oxfordshire Limited Edition magazine:

“…will come and show you how to do everything from pruning to planting”


Historic Gardens Foundation:

"such a good idea"


Satisfied clients:

“I have also used him to train garden staff in specific skills including safety aspects”

“Thank you once again”

“…has offered me considerable advice…”

Create a design

Planting Plan

Learn how to prune


Grow your own food

The end product of your efforts!

Liven up a shady wall

Fern Basket