Robert Myerscough

Yesterday the RHSI learnt with great pleasure that John Anderson has been awarded the Veitch Memorial Medal (VMM) by the RHS in London. The VMM is an international award honouring individuals for their exceptional involvement in the advancement of the science, art and practice of horticulture, and is the highest award the RHS can give to a horticulturalist, not born in Britain, or who resides outside the country. Our former Patron, Helen Dillon is one of the distinguished holders of the VMM.

Today, John is Keeper of the Gardens of Windsor Great Park. In awarding its medal, the RHS recognises that John Anderson has furthered the careers of many through sharing his expert plant knowledge, in addition to serving on the RHS Woody Plant Committee since 2007, formerly as Vice Chairman. John Anderson assumed the role of Keeper in June 2016 and has responsibility for 120 hectares across the Windsor Estate, including The Savill Garden and The Valley Gardens, as well as the private garden at Frogmore House.

Having studied at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, John’s professional career started at Mount Usher, in County Wicklow, where he was soon acknowledged as an outstanding plantsman and horticulturalist. From there he moved to the National Trust’s beautiful Inverewe Garden, on the west coast of the Scottish Highlands as head gardener. After a relatively brief time there, John moved south to Hampshire, and the magnificent Exbury Gardens, with responsibility for its 200-acre woodland garden, world-famous for the Rothschild collection of rhododendrons, azaleas, camellias and rare trees and shrubs.

John Anderson has been a long-time friend of the RHSI, and we are especially proud that this Irishman has been recognised for his outstanding contribution to horticulture in the United Kingdom, at the very highest levels.