Saturday, 3 September 2016

Your Garden

I was saddened to hear the news that Your Garden magazine is going to fold. While it is disappointing to see any title go it is especially true of Your Garden which has the distinguished honour of being Australia's longest running gardening title. 

Your Garden was first published in 1947 under the editorship of Ernest E Lord. The 1940s, 50s and early 60s were the peak years of interest in gardening and with the post war housing boom and increased population the magazine prospered.  The title actively promoted the use of native plants in home gardens as well as growing orchids and other ornamentals. The publication was general in nature and reflected the diverse horticultural interests of amateur and professional gardeners.

The title had an impressive list of contributors during its lifetime, including (among others): Winifred Bristow, Phil Dudman, Rodger Elliot, Jean Galbraith, Kevin Heinze, Arno King, J N Rentoul and Arthur Swaby. As well as excellent articles Your Garden was attractive to look at and also included gardening themed cartoons - something unheard of in contemporary garden mags.

By the 1990s and the new century the magazine was in slow decline. The readership was ageing and the publishers made little attempt to appeal to younger readers. While Your Garden had seen off several other titles during its boom years it couldn't compete with new (and arguably) fresher journals such as Gardening Australia and Better Homes and Gardens which had companion TV shows.  In recent years the magazine has moved from being a monthly to a seasonal publication. I wish the current writers and production staff well.

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