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Conference Speakers 2023

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Juliet Sargeant FSGD ⚫ Del Buono-Gazerwitz ⚫ Jim Fogarty ⚫ Sophie Walker  Tomoko Kawauchi MSGD ⚫ Tony Kirkham  Wambui Ippolito


Having worked initially in medicine, Juliet swapped science for garden design and has run her Sussex practice for 30 years. She also heads The Sussex Garden School, for creative garden courses.

Previously an RHS show garden selector, RHS judge and Chair of the SGD, she is now an SGD Fellow and Fellow of the Landscape Institute.

She has several industry awards, including: the SGD Hard Landscaping Award; SGD Sustainability Award and RHS Chelsea Gold and Silver-Gilt Medals.

Juliet has also been named in the Evening Standard Top 100 People, GG2 Leadership Awards and the BBC 100 Women. Listeners to Radio 4 will also recognise her voice as a regular panellist on Gardeners Question Time.

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 ⚫ Del Buono-Gazerwitz ⚫ Jim Fogarty ⚫ Sophie Walker  Tomoko Kawauchi MSGD ⚫ Tony Kirkham  Wambui Ippolito 

Tomasso del Buono MSGD & Paul Gazerwitz MSGD, photo credit Marianne MajerusDEL BUONO GAZERWITZ

Del Buono Gazerwitz was founded as a partnership in September 2000 – it has grown into an established, eight-strong practice working on some of Britain and Europe’s most prestigious gardens and estates. With a current portfolio of UK projects both in London and the country, as well as commissions in Ireland, Spain and Italy, del Buono Gazerwitz has cemented its reputation as a design team sensitive to the landscapes, materials and people it works with. Having worked in locations as varied as Greece, France, Switzerland, the United States and the Caribbean, del Buono Gazerwitz also undertakes projects in the commercial sector having created the garden at ‘The Greenhouse’ restaurant in London’s Mayfair, a number of semi-public open spaces working for leading property developers such as Derwent London and recently the Masterplan and detail design of several different gardens for the newly created Davines Village in Parma, Italy.

The practice operates from a main studio in central London, with a second office in Florence, Italy. Their work has been widely published in several magazines and books both in the UK and abroad. 2008 saw the creation of a first show Garden at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show; ‘Summer Solstice’ for sponsor Daylesford Organic, awarded a Silver Gilt Medal, whilst in 2014 they were awarded a Gold Medal for their second Chelsea garden created this time for the Daily Telegraph.

Tommaso del Buono, CMLI FSGD, left his native Florence in the 80’s to study at the University of Greenwich. After completing his studies in 1987 he worked in London for different practices and, after a 3 year stint at Michael Hopkins and Partners, he joined Arabella Lennox-Boyd’s practice where, in the course of a 10 year long collaboration, he was involved in a wide range of projects both in the UK and abroad. As a garden writer, Tommaso has written for publications including ‘Gardens Illustrated’ and The Guardian, and sat on the editorial board of the Garden Design Journal. Until recently he sat on the Judging Panel for the Society of Garden Designers (SGD) Awards.

Paul Gazerwitz, CMLI MSGD, studied Landscape Architecture at Cornell University in New York and started his career working in his native USA. After moving to London in 1989, Paul worked for several award winning practices inthe commercial sector, becoming involved in the creation of many large public open spaces and mixed use developments. An experienced plantsman, Paul also joined Arabella Lennox-Boyd’s office in the late 1990’s prior to setting up the practice with Tommaso in 2000. During the last 15 years Paul has developed a keen interest in the history of Architecture successfully completing the restoration of two Georgian houses in London’s Spitalfields. Until recently he sat on the editorial board of the Garden Design Journal.

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 ⚫ Del Buono-Gazerwitz ⚫ Jim Fogarty ⚫ Sophie Walker  Tomoko Kawauchi MSGD ⚫ Tony Kirkham  Wambui Ippolito 


Jim Fogarty is a registered Landscape Architect (AILA) based in Melbourne, Australia. With over thirty internationally recognised design awards including sixteen gold medals, Jim is passionate about raising the profile of Australian garden design both in Australia and overseas.

In May 2009, Jim won the award for Best Design for his Australian Show Garden at the World Garden Competition in Shizuoka Prefecture, Japan. At the RHS Chelsea Flower Show in 2011, Jim designed an Australian Show Garden for the Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria that won a Gold medal on the Main Avenue. At the 2011 Gardening World Cup in Japan, Jim was awarded ‘Best in Show.’ Jim has been awarded Gold Medals at the Singapore Garden Festival in 2006, 2008, 2010, 2014 & 2018 (2018 with Andy Sturgeon) and has received theAward for Horticultural Excellence in 2006, 2010 & 2014. Jim was awarded a Gold Medal for his Gallipoli Garden at the Australian Garden Show Sydney 2013. In 2014 Jim designed ‘Essence of Australia’ for the Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria that was the first Australian themed garden at the RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show and was awarded a Gold Medal as well as the Tudor Rose Award for the Best Show Garden. In 2015, Jim became the first Australian to exhibit a garden at the Philadelphia Flower Show USA, winning a Gold Medal.

Jim has been a regular garden design writer for various publications in Australia and is the immediate past national president & Life Member of the Horticultural Media Association Australia.

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 ⚫ Del Buono-Gazerwitz ⚫ Jim Fogarty ⚫ Sophie Walker  Tomoko Kawauchi MSGD ⚫ Tony Kirkham  Wambui Ippolito


Based in the UK, Sophie makes gardens internationally for both private and public space. Her writing on the Japanese garden offers in-depth insight into the art, culture and aesthetics of the Japanese garden, grounded in her work as a garden-maker. Her seminal book The Japanese Garden (Phaidon, 2017) explores the conceptual, abstract nature of the Japanese garden and considers the many complex layers of meaning.

Sophie's expansive design for the De Pont Museum, Tilburg, Netherlands, opened in September 2017 in celebration of the museum’s 25 year anniversary. In Haywards Heath, UK, Sophie redesigned an area of Borde Hill Gardens, opened to the public in 2018. Also in 2018, Sophie designed a public garden commissioned for Ulsan Park, Korea. In London, Sophie’s projects include an NHS therapy garden for patients of Grove Park Practice in Chiswick. She worked in collaboration with Zaha Hadid Architects as one of ten shortlisted teams for a UK government commission for a new national Holocaust Memorial on the River Thames besides the Houses of Parliament.

She has received a commission to design a public memorial garden in memory of the great human rights activist Helen Bamber. Private UK-based projects include residential gardens in and around London including a rooftop site in central London and a large scale design on the Sussex coast. Sophie’s enthusiasm for travel has led her to projects as far afield as Japan, India and Sri Lanka and Bahamas. In India, Sophie is currently working on two inner city projects both of which hold sustainability at their heart.

Sophie enjoys working with rare and unusual plants. For her garden Cave Pavilion, at RHS Chelsea Flower Show, Sophie worked with modern-day plant hunters Sue and Bleddyn Wynn-Jones to produce a 'fully-traceable' garden of previously un-exhibited plants that had been grown entirely from seed collected in the wild. Her interest in plants and conservation has extended to her private projects and she has recently completed an eight year project working in the Bahamas in collaboration with the Bahamian National Trust to restore a private garden with native habitat. Presently, Sophie is working in Oxfordshire, using livestock to restore and manage a traditional English Parkland.

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 ⚫ Del Buono-Gazerwitz ⚫ Jim Fogarty ⚫ Sophie Walker  Tomoko Kawauchi MSGD ⚫ Tony Kirkham  Wambui Ippolito


After gaining a Bachelor’s Degree in Architecture from the University of Shiga Prefecture in Japan, Tomoko came to the UK to study for a National Diploma in Horticulture at Writtle College, Essex in 2005.

She joined Charlotte Rowe Garden Design in 2006 initially as an intern, staying on afterwards as a Project Designer until 2014. She then worked as a designer at another London design studio before returning to Charlotte Rowe Garden Design as Design Director in June 2018. Tomoko has worked on a wide range of projects throughout the UK and overseas, including public spaces and RHS show gardens, though her principal focus has always been private residential gardens and landscapes in London and the rest of the UK.

The practice is currently working on a wide range of projects, in Ibiza, Herefordshire, Hampshire, Sussex, Gloucestershire, Surrey and the Island of Jersey, as well as a number of gardens in London. Tomoko is a fully accredited member of the Society of Garden Designers.



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 ⚫ Del Buono-Gazerwitz ⚫ Jim Fogarty Sophie Walker  Tomoko Kawauchi MSGD ⚫ Tony Kirkham  Wambui Ippolito


Following an apprenticeship in the forestry industry and 2 years as an arborist, in 1978 Tony started at The Royal Botanic Gardens Kew on the 3-year Diploma course, graduating in 1981. In July 2020 he retired as the Head of the Arboretum, and Horticultural Services, where he was responsible for the management and curation of over 14,000 trees in the collections. He participated in and led several plant collecting expeditions to Chile and the Far East of Asia, including China, Taiwan, Japan, S. Korea, and Russia and has co-authored several books on his travels including: “Plants from the Edge of the World” and “Wilson’s China: A Century On”.

He has featured on several tree related TV programmes and lectures internationally and regularly writes many popular articles and papers on woody plants. He sits on Council at the RHS, is chairman of the RHS woody plant committee and sits on the RHS awards committee. He is a trustee of the International Dendrology Society and chairs ‘Trees and Shrubs Online’. He is a member of Action Oak, the Queen’s Green Canopy and is a trustee and chairman of the advisory board at the Chelsea Physic Garden and TROBI, (Tree Register of the British Isles) and Patron of the Trees, Design Action Group (TDAG).

In 2009 he was awarded the Associate of Honour by the RHS for distinguished service to horticulture, the RHS Victoria Medal of Honour and an MBE in 2019 for services to the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew and Arboriculture and made an Honorary Lifetime fellow of the Arboricultural Association in2015. He was made the Vice President of the Arboricultural Society and awarded the AA Lifetimeachievement award in 2019. Made an Honorary Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Foresters in 2022. In 2004 he completed the revision of the “Pruning of Trees Shrubs and Conifers” with Timber Press and more recently written “Essential Pruning Techniques” and in 2019 co-authored the “Haynes Workshop manual of Trees” with Kenton Rogers, and “Remarkable Trees” for Thames Hudson with Christina Harrison. His latest book iscalled “Growing Trees” and is a general guide to growing trees in the garden. “Arboretum” is due to be released in September 2022 by Bloomsbury Press. Tony has also worked with Francis Lincoln on a series of games featuring trees, Match a Leaf, Tree Vision, Treefamilies and Tree Bingo.

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 ⚫ Del Buono-Gazerwitz ⚫ Jim Fogarty ⚫ Sophie Walker  Tomoko Kawauchi MSGD ⚫ Tony Kirkham  Wambui Ippolito

Tony in Hokkaido, Japan in 1997


Kenyan-born Wambui Ippolito grew up travelling the world, before settling in the United States where she graduated from the New York Botanical Garden's prestigious School of Professional Horticulture. Early in her career Wambui worked as a horticulturist at various high-end estates, including at Martha Stewart’s home in Bedford, New York. One of the most sought-after garden designers in the USA, Wambui won the coveted PHS Philadelphia Flower Show Cup - Best in Show award in 2021.

Wambui lives in New York with her American husband and their daughter. She remains connected to her childhood roots in Nairobi where her family's garden, located in a rare example of indigenous forest, is filled with native plant species that include Kniphofia.

While not designing, Wambui lectures and works with international organisations, museums and botanical institutions on programme development. She has taught at the Brooklyn Botanical Garden and Grounds for Sculpture (New Jersey), and lectures nationwide. She is currently writing a book on immigrant gardens and their influence on the evolution of American landscape.

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 ⚫ Del Buono-Gazerwitz ⚫ Jim Fogarty  Sophie Walker  Tomoko Kawauchi MSGD ⚫ Tony Kirkham  Wambui Ippolito ⚫