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Sonya Patel Ellis
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Sonya Patel Ellis

Full Member


I am an RHS Level 2 qualified, Garden Media Guild associated writer, editor, artist, gardener, and educator focusing on building connections between plants, people, words, and wellbeing, with expertise in the history, cultivation, and usage of herbs, inspiring nature accessibility, and placemaking. I’m also a mum of two lovely, creative boys in whom I try to instil a love of gardening, nature, and powerful storytelling. // WRITING & EDITING Authored books include Collins Botanical Bible (Harper Collins, 2018) – one of Garden Illustrated’s books of the year in 2018 – The Heritage Herbal (British Library Publications, 2020), Collins Backyard Birdwatcher’s Bible (Harper Collins, 2021), The Modern Gardener (Harper Collins, 2022), the Collins Chickenkeeper’s Bible (Harper Collins, 2023) and The Herb Book (DK Living, 2023). Recent editing projects include To Stand and Stare by Andrew Timothy O’Brien (DK Books, 2022) and The Essential Aromatherapy Garden (2019) by Julia Lawless. Other published works include articles for Gardens Illustrated, Countryfile, Bloom, Wild Alchemy, The Forest, and The Strategist magazines plus I curate a regular output of garden and nature inspired NOTES from A Botanical World on Substack, and run writing for wellbeing workshops for children and adults. // EXHIBITIONS, EVENTS & WORKSHOPS Solo exhibitions and events include Herbival (2021) and Florilegium (2015) at the Garden Museum, A Botanical World (2018) and Herb Garden (2016) at The Marksman, Discovering John Fothergill (2022), Dare to Dream (2018) and Plant Shop (2019) at Forest Gate Community Garden, and Hortus Uptonensis (2015) at West Ham Park, The Story Within (2015) at Forest Gate, Stratford, and Beckton libraries as winner of the Rosetta Arts Prize 2015, and The Earth Laughs in Flowers (2014) at CoffeE7. I have also worked with galleries, museums, and arts organisations including The British Library, National Archives, Kew Gardens, and A New Directive and am in talks with various East London galleries about producing a new series of cultural gardening workshops. // GARDENING & EDUCATION I also combine horticultural and creative skills to run an ambitious educational gardening programme at Godwin Junior School in Newham working with Forest Gate Community Garden and other local initiatives to forge green corridors between nearby parks and nature spaces. This includes gardening with young people and adults from a diverse background, often with limited access to nature, and promoting the power of nature connection and herbs to support improved wellbeing. Herbs also form the foundation of my bespoke gardening consultancy producing sensory, therapeutic, or educational gardens and planting plans for private clients and public spaces.


United Kingdom

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