Come and celebrate five years with us...

Thanks for celebrating five years with us... We had a great time!

Early Bird tickets on sale for
Forde Abbey 15th & 16th September
More fantastic speakers
lined up for 2018
Great garden

Returning to Forde Abbey in 2018 – Toby’s Harvest Festival. After a successful first year in September 2017, we can’t wait to do it all again!  Join us on Saturday 15th and Sunday 16th September.

Early Bird tickets ON SALE NOW!

Read more about Toby’s GardenFest Forde Abbey >>


SUCCESS! Our fifth year of Toby’s Garden Festival was so much fun! Look out for the dates for next year’s event – early bird tickets will be on sale towards the end of the year.

Take a look at who got involved in 2018…

Who’s speaking at Forde Abbey in 2018?

Coming up in September we are welcoming some fabulous garden speakers and experts! We’re delighted that actor John Challis, better known as Boycie from Only Fools & Horses was so popular with Powderham visitors we have lured him back to be with us at Forde Abbey, plus we have the wonderful Alys Fowler, RHS judge Jim Buttress, Matt Biggs of Gardeners’ Question Time fame and… drum roll…. the Blue Peter Gardener!

Plus the demo tipi makes welcome comeback with NEW workshops on paper-flower making with Wildhive’s Bee Watson, photography lessons with Andrew Maybury, tree talks from Kevin Croucher of Thornhayes Nursery plus all the favourites from last year – cider-drinking, apple-pressing, basket-weaving and much more to be announced in the coming months




Our Campaign to save the M5 Willow Man

In 2018 we’re launching a campaign to secure the future of the iconic M5 willow man who strides alongside the motorway near junction 23 at Bridgwater. Created by artist Serena de la Hey in 2000 as part of The Year of the Artist the willow man was conceived as a temporary structure and now nearly two decades on, it needs a complete rebuild as well as a fund for future maintenance.

For us, The Willow Man is a great West Country landmark, a symbol of arrival for both residents and holiday makers and if he is allowed to simply deteriorate and disappear it’d be huge loss to our landscape. We couldn’t bring the Willow Man to the festival so the next best thing was to ask Serena to make something for the fest to help raise awareness about the Willow Man’s plight.

Serena created a huge ‘Willow Wonder’ at the Garden Festival with help from artist Stefan Jennings and Toby himself, located in the Deer Park.

Serena says, “Willow is an ephemeral material, and no-one realised The Willow Man would become a cherished part of the landscape – least of all me – so we have to do something soon or he will be lost.”

For more information,

Latest News

Get Juicing with Vigo

July 16, 2018

Vigo, the well-known West Country makers of apple presses and cider-making kits are coming to Toby’s Harvest Festival, staging demonstrations to help you make the most of your autumn harvest. The team from the family-run … Read more

No More Watering?

July 12, 2018

If the idea of never having to water your garden ever again appeals, then Joshua Sparkes, the new head gardener at Forde Abbey is the person you need to meet. Fresh from his travels around … Read more

Wreaths for Autumn

June 18, 2018

Making the most of what’s in season, Catherine Nix from @Myscentedhomeonline will be in the Demo Tipi on the Upper Lawn at Toby’s Garden Festival with lots of tips and advice on how to make … Read more

How to Make a Meadow

June 14, 2018

Create a patchwork of colour through the summer months with a wildlife-friendly flower meadow that will provide a haven for butterflies, bugs and bees. The wildflower swirls at Forde Abbey are the perfect first step … Read more

What’s on in the Demo Tipi

May 29, 2018

We have an exciting line-up of talented West Country artisans, growers and experts lined up to speak in the Demo Tipi at our second Harvest Festival this September, plus two days of talks and tours … Read more

Learn the Recipe for Soil Health

May 29, 2018

Soil, the backbone to any garden and the key ingredient that will either help or hinder your chances of achieving crop after bumper crop of flowers and vegetables. Fresh from his travels in America researching … Read more