Beverly Nichols-English Garden Writer #atozchallenge


“A garden is a place for shaping a little world of your own according to your heart’s desire.” Beverley Nichols from Green Grows the City

I should explain that I was introduced to Beverley Nichols when I visited @Merry Hall by way of reading this first book in a trilogy, followed by @Laughter on the Stairs and @Sunlight on the Lawn. Some people said his garden books where “as much about his house and cats and friends and neighbors as about plants and garden making.” That is what is so much fun about them. He did, however, capture the “universals of garden making.” I would have hated to miss Oldfield, Nichols gardener, who was typical of the ‘old school’ head gardeners before World War II; a subject I write about in Greening of a Heart.  I want to make special mention of ‘Our Rose,’ Miss Rose Fenton, the trendy flower arranger that Nichols mentions throughout the Trilogy. As a way of paying tribute to Nichols and my love affair with him and his world, I wrote into my own novel, Greening of a Heart, ’Miss Elizabeth,’ with her ghastly flower arrangements. She has her own story and reasons for being who she is, but ‘Our Rose,’ is the unforgettable character from Nichols imagination that has remained with me all these years.

Here is a quote from Greening, an intentional nod to Beverley Nichols character,  ‘Our Rose.’

“Hannah saw Miss Elizabeth carrying a huge, ugly flower container filled with God-knows-what, coming towards them…The tiny woman was in complete disarray, wearing a fancy sheer blouse paired with a dated Christmas-plaid wool skirt, a fabric she seemed to wear regardless of the temperature. She’d thrown a scarf around her neck for good measure and was wearing dangle earrings, the weight of which pulled at her ear lobes. Her thinning hair was still damp from a last minute shampoo.” 

I invite you to read @Beverley Nichols books rereleased by @Timber Press and hope you will download my novel, Greening on your Kindle, Nook, Apple etc. to learn more about a cast of wonderful characters.

About Stepheny Forgue Houghtlin

Stepheny Forgue Houghtlin grew up in Evanston, IL. and is a graduate of the University of Kentucky. She is an author of two novels: The Greening of a Heart and Facing East. She lives, writes and gardens in NC. Visit her:
This entry was posted in A to Z Blog Challenge - April 2013 and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Beverly Nichols-English Garden Writer #atozchallenge

  1. Ruby Young says:

    Hello to a fellow southerner! Your characters sound absolutely charming! I have written down the title of your book, along with Beverley Nichols name. Thank you so much for your post. Best regards to you, my friend. Ruby

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