In a recent newsletter I outlined the Society’s changing strategic direction.  Articulating a strategic vision is relatively easy. Achieving it is, however,  a tad more difficult. As the old proverb goes “there’s many a slip twixt cup and lip” and many fine sounding strategic plans fail due to a lack of commitment at the action planning stage, however I believe that the CHS is making good progress led by the Education and Marketing Committee chaired by Ray King.

The committee identified a unifying theme for 2014 of  “Our Living Landscape” and the first initiative is the Winter Speaker Series featuring Professors Dave Kelly and Paula Jameson from Canterbury University, CHS Honorary Botanist Colin Meurk and Landscape Architect Di Lucas.

Details of this series can be found on our website. I’m aware that in my previous article I suggested that the CHS was “moving from talking about gardening to doing it” and some of you might regard a series of talks as contrary to this.

We are moving on two fronts simultaneously – widening and deepening the scope of the Society. The talks are part of the widening front, “putting ‘horticulture’ back into the CHS” as Ray observes.

As a precursor to the CHS strategic plan Vice-President Alan Jolliffe defined “horticulture” as “the science of growing and managing plants and soils of all types which may be as narrow as a single crop or as broad as a native forest and can include intensive agriculture and forestry”.

A series of interactive gardening and new skills workshops are in the pipeline. Details to follow.