'The Queen's Garden'
(DVD / NR / 2015 / PBS)
Overview: With permission from Her Majesty the Queen, this documentary reveals a year in Buckingham Palace Gardens, exploring the history and this remarkable hidden royal treasure in the center of London.
DVD Verdict: 'The Queen's Garden' is truly a delight to behold, because quite unlike any documentary on the subject before, and with permission from Her Majesty also (of course), the PBS crew reveals a year in Buckingham Palace Gardens. They explore the history, and the natural history of this remarkable hidden royal treasure in the center of London.
Indeed, what it uncovers is a veritable wonderland with a five century history, an urban oasis of wildlife where the Queen has lived with her family and a "living museum" where almost every plant (and many of the animals!) have a royal story to tell.
With unprecedented access we follow the garden's transformation across all four seasons uncovering rare flowers specially bred for the Queen, extraordinary wildlife captured using hidden cameras, a vast lake with an island in the middle where the royal bees make honey, and a giant 15ft marble urn that once belonged to Napoleon to name but a few of the treats in store.
For a quick location lesson, the garden at Buckingham Palace is situated at the rear (west) of Buckingham Palace. It covers much of the area of the former Goring Great Garden, named after Lord Goring, occupant of one of the earliest grand houses on the site. It was laid out by Henry Wise and subsequently redesigned by William Townsend Aiton for George IV.
The garden occupies a 42 acres site in the City of Westminster, London and has two-and-a-half miles of gravel paths. Its area is bounded by Constitution Hill to the north, Hyde Park Corner to the west, Grosvenor Place to the south-west and the Royal Mews, Queen's Gallery, and Buckingham Palace to the south and east. The planting is varied and exotic, with a mulberry tree dating back to the time of James I of England.
Witness the striking transformation as each season brings different sights, sounds, smells, and visitors Queen; to the foliage collected from the garden to decorate the Palace at Christmas. From its wildest corners, where it functions as one of the most important havens for wildlife in London, to its role as the sumptuous venue for an 8,000 strong Royal Garden Party, 'The Queen's Gardeb' offers viewers privileged access and a unique perspective into a special place.
Chock full of surprises, delights, and unusual and unexpected discoveries, 'The Queen's Garden' reveals wildlife and plant life as they are filmed in all their forms, both commonplace and rare, both by day and by night. And discover how the garden is used inside the Palace: from the mulberries that are used by the royal kitchens to cook dishes for the Queen; to the foliage collected from the garden to decorate the Palace at Christmas.
From its wildest corners, where it functions as one of the most important havens for wildlife in London, to its role as the sumptuous venue for an 8,000 strong Royal Garden Party, 'The Queen's Garden' offers viewers privileged access and a unique perspective into a special place. This is a Widescreen Presentation (1.78:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs.