Page last updated at 13:17 GMT, Wednesday, 13 August 2008 14:17 UK

Buckland to host Gardeners' World

Toby Buckland
Toby Buckland is known for his garden features made from recycled materials

Toby Buckland is to become the main presenter of the BBC's Gardeners' World programme, it has been announced.

Buckland, who has previously hosted gardening shows including Home Front In The Garden, takes over from Monty Don.

Don, who had fronted the programme since 2003, stood down from his role in May after suffering a stroke.

Gardeners' World, which first began more than 40 years ago and is the UK's longest-running gardening show, is due to return for a new series next month.

"Thrill and honour"

Buckland trained as a nurseryman and gardener before qualifying in landscape management.

He called taking the helm of Gardeners' World "a complete thrill and honour", adding he was keen to start work on the programme's site at Berryfields in Warwickshire.

"Monty and the team have done some wonderful things there in recent years, and I look forward to working with them and continuing that, but obviously I'm keen to make my own mark there too," said Buckland.

He added that gardening was "a way of life" to him.

Buckland has also written a number of horticultural books, built a garden for Poet Laureate Andrew Motion and was gardener to the novelist Tom Sharpe.

Monty Don said in May when he stepped down from his role that he intended to take "gardening leave for the rest of the summer to make a full recovery and so that I am ready to tackle new projects".

Previous hosts of Gardeners' World have included Alan Titchmarsh, Geoff Hamilton and Percy Thrower.


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