TERRY, Bill




Author Tags: Gardening

Bill Terry and Rosemary Bates visited eleven exceptional gardens in coastal B.C. and Washington State for Beauty by Design (Touchwood $24.95). Locales include Robin Hopper’s “Anglojapanadian” woodland wonderland as well as the greenery retreats created by celebrity artist couples Robert and Birgit Bateman on Salt Spring Island, Des and Sandy Kennedy on Denman Island and Patrick Lane/Lorna Crozier of Saanich.

A former CBC executive, Bill Terry has taught plant propagation in the Continuing Education program at Capilano University. He has a diverse collection of Asiatic poppies (Meconopsis) and is a member of the Meconopsis Group and The Royal Horticultural Society. His book, Blue Heaven: Encounters with the Blue Poppy (TouchWood Editions, 2009), is the story of, and guide to growing, the Himalayan Blue Poppy.

According to publicity materials:

Beyond Beauty (TouchWood, 2012) is the story of a remarkable journey that Bill Terry and his wife, Rosemary, undertook when they joined a party of Dutch and British alpine plant hunters intent on botanizing on the roof of the world. The expedition travelled in a convoy of eight jeeps over roads that were rarely paved and occasionally terrifying. They crossed fifteen passes, some as high as 5,000 metres (16,500 feet), where even in midsummer, the wind scoured exposed skin.

They braved days at high altitude, panting in the thin air of the Tibetan plateau, and were rewarded with collages of rock, moss, lichen, flower, and foliage so sublime they might be imagined as "perfect gardens," though no gardener or landscape architect had a hand in their creation.

As the journey unfolds, Terry sketches the history of the region and observes life for Tibetans under direct Chinese rule and the ever-alert People's Liberation Army. He reflects on the potential threat of a massive hydroelectric development to the wellbeing of the millions of people living downstream in Southeast Asia. Terry also contrasts the hardships suffered and dangers faced by pioneer plant hunters a century ago with the relative comfort and safety of modern travel in these remote and exotic lands.

Throughout the book, the author's distinctive photography portrays local custom and culture and celebrates the wildflowers in all their profusion, especially the almost heartbreaking beauty of the Asiatic Poppies.

From publicity materials, In The Carefree Garden (Touchwood, 2015), considers “what happens when a lifelong gardener finally realizes that he must collaborate with Mother Nature” in order to build the perfect garden. Terry offers “personal stories, thoughts, and ideas” interspersed with “humorous, imagined conversations with Mother Nature herself.” He finds that the pursuit for horticultural perfection “respects both Mother Nature’s demands—integrating endemic plants, choosing natural species and varieties—and the gardener’s personality—expressing her own taste and creativity, and rich in private memories.”

BOOKS:

Blue Heaven: Encounters with the Blue Poppy (TouchWood, 2009)
Beyond Beauty: Hunting the Wild Blue Poppy (TouchWood, 2012) $24.95 978-1-927129-36-4
Beauty by Design (Touchwood 2013) $24.95 9781771510127
The Carefree Garden: Letting Nature Play Her Part (Touchwood Edition, 2015) $21.95 9781771511261

[BCBW 2015] "Natural Science"