Henry Bartlam

Dig is the brainchild of Henry Bartlam, who is also father to three human children under the age of 7 and is Managing Partner of leading advertising agency Leagas Delaney. Evidently Henry doesn’t sleep much and thankfully doesn’t get too grumpy despite this.

Henry has been a keen gardener since he was even smaller than he is now, and Henry is the man behind the @mylondongarden instagram account you will almost definitely have never seen.

Henry has long believed that his contemporaries could and should enjoy the simple pleasure of gardening just as much as he does. With the growing need for more biodiversity and awareness of the plight of bees the need to get more people creating beautiful gardens has been ever more pressing.

He’s equally long been frustrated that creating a beautiful garden is so difficult (figuring out plant combinations for yourself, latin names, countless trips to garden centres, easy mistakes on planting and care) or expensive (help from garden designers understandably doesn’t come cheap!).

So he set out to solve this problem and took the sensible first step to solving any problem: talking to friends and family about it.

Ed Maitland Smith

First he spoke to Ed. Ed and Henry used to work together at an advertising agency and, while everyone else spent their lunchtimes chatting to colleagues about football and fashion, Henry and Ed got together quietly in a corner to talk chrysanthemums and compost (or that’s how I imagine it anyway).

Ed now works in music and arts communications so, alongside a lifelong passion for nature, plants, and all things natural world, he knows his way around a press release too.

With a firm belief that gardening, engaging with nature, (and just generally being outside) can have a hugely positive effect on people, Ed was as excited about Dig as my three year old gets about ice lollies. Together, they made a plan.

The plan involved a website so they endeavoured to speak to someone that knew at least something about how you create one.

Ben Davies

Henry and I have been friends since university. Our last collaboration was a carefully choreographed, entirely bespoke, unnecessarily elaborate murder mystery party for 20 friends in our third year: the obvious precursor to starting a gardening business together.

I run a creative digital agency called The Web Kitchen and I’m lucky to work with a team of precisely the designers and developers that you would want to speak to if you were trying to create a high-end, beautiful lifestyle brand and easy-to-use website.

Unfortunately (or maybe fortunately?) I know next to nothing about gardens despite having pushed a wheelbarrow around at the behest of my mum for much of my youth.

So I’m the layman of the team and represent the “love the outdoors, love wildlife and biodiversity, love plants but don’t know flowers that aren’t daffodils and roses” group of potential customers.

Obviously we’re so far lacking a professional, but thankfully Henry and I went to uni with not only a professional garden designer, but an award winning professional garden designer, and a very lovely one at that.

Alexandra Hollingsworth

Alex began her career at PwC and Sainsbury’s but soon enough discovered that her passion was garden and landscape design. It turns out she’s rather good at it too, she trained with the RHS and the Garden Design Academy of Ireland achieving a Distinction, then won a national television competition for new designers. This led to exhibiting a show garden at ‘Bloom’, Ireland’s national garden show, which won a silver medal.

Alex has worked with Mazzullo + Russell, a leading London garden design practice, and has run her own garden design practice since 2016. She’s also had a show garden featured on BBC Gardeners’ World, which won silver at Gardeners’ World Live in 2019. You can see the garden for yourself here:

Our goal is to encourage, inspire and support a new generation of gardeners and together drive an upsurge in biodiversity, plant life, pollinators and wellbeing across the country.

Our Mission