A facebook friend of ours, Ken Newman, recently made us aware of a television show titled “The Victorian Kitchen Garden” that first aired on BBC2 in 1987. We promptly lost ourselves in episode after episode of the series, which follows the month-by-month restoration of the Victorian walled kitchen garden at the Chilton Foliat estate in Wiltshire, England. Each half hour episode contains interesting botanical history, beautiful cinematography, and helpful gardening tips. As Ken described it, it’s Masterpiece Theater for gardeners. One of the episodes (July) even describes England’s Victorian gooseberry craze, which we wrote about last summer.

Since January is often the one month a year that gardeners get to sit back and dream, we thought we’d provide you with a little visual fodder by posting the episodes here. Sadly, the DVD doesn’t seem to be available for purchase in the U.S., so the following links are to YouTube. Also unfortunately, it doesn’t seem that the second halves of the final few episodes are available online yet either. Maybe if enough interest is shown, the entire series will be released here in the U.S. so we can find out how it ends.

 

Victorian Kitchen Garden Episode 1: Introduction

 

Victorian Kitchen Garden Episode 2: January

Victorian Kitchen Garden Episode 3: February

 

Victorian Kitchen Garden Episode 4: March

 

Victorian Kitchen Garden Episode 5: April

 

Victorian Kitchen Garden Episode 6: May

 

Victorian Kitchen Garden Episode 7: June
(Part One)

 

June
(Part Two)

 

Victorian Kitchen Garden Episode 8: July
(Part One)

 

July
(Part Two)

 

Victorian Kitchen Garden Episode 9: August
(Part One)

 

August
(Part Two)

 

Victorian Kitchen Garden Episode 10: September
(Part One)

 

September
(Part Two)

 

Victorian Kitchen Garden Episode 11: October
(Part One)

 

(We can’t find the second parts of the rest of the series. If people do locate them online, please let us know.)

 

Victorian Kitchen Garden Episode 12: November
(Part One)

 

(We can’t find the second parts of the rest of the series. If people do locate them online, please let us know.)

 

Victorian Kitchen Garden Episode 13: December
(Part One)

(We can’t find the second parts of the rest of the series. If people do locate them online, please let us know.)

 

2002 Interview with Victorian Kitchen Garden Host Peter Thoday
Recounts the making of the series
(Part One)

(Part Two)

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  • By: Charles

    Was actually living in the UK when it first aired in the 80’s and didn’t miss a single episode. In fact a very good friend of mine lived in a “Gardeners Cottage” on an estate in Suffolk that had a garden much like that which was featured in the series. Used to watch episodes of the series on my PC, but then the copyright folks at BBC must have realized the popularity and that it still had lots of revenue value so removed it. Still it’s worth the purchase… if only we could get access to an NTSC version. For now it appears only available on PAL.

    • By: Katherine

      Your email was such a pleasant surprise. Thank you so much for the redirection. I sincerely appreciate it.

  • By: Cindy vaught

    Thank you for posting this wonderful series! Sadly, I only got through the July episode before BBC copywriters took them off of YouTube.

  • By: Jessica H.

    Sadly, they’ve been copyrighted by the BBC now and you can no longer view them on the links you’ve provided. :(

  • By: Jeanie Murphy

    So nice of you to post these. I’ll enjoy them very much. Thank you! Happy 2013! Kiss polka spot for me! Lol

  • By: Catherine Kurczynski

    Watched this series last year & loved it. Time to review these inspiring shows. Thanks for setting them up for us. Cathybytheriver

  • By: Larry Johnson

    This is a bit off subject but, since I love Downton Abbey so much. It just seems to me English TV is so very good I just wish we could get more of it.

  • By: Jeff

    The DVD series can be found on amazon.uk instead of amazon.com

  • By: Anne

    I found the companion book for the series in a used book store years ago & tried to track down the series. Please, BBC, reissue this for the Colonies! I'm dying to see and own it! The book,BTW, is readily available on Biblio.com. I actually own 2 copies. Its a great read for veggie or any gardeners!

  • By: Matt

    The Victorian Kitchen is a great series! I've watched it a few times now. Agree with Clayton that you should check out Victorian Farm, Victorian Farm Christmas, and Edwardian Farm. Also check out Tales from the Green Valley and the River Cottage series.

  • By: Kevin Moses

    are there current episodes of this? If so, where can I find them to watch. thanks

    • By: Dr. Brent

      Hi, Kevin. There were several seasons of this series, but it is no longer in production

  • By: Carol

    Is there a source for any of the Victorian Kitchen Garden tools or impliments? I was particularly interested in finding a wimple, blanching terra cotta pots, and/or the string winder.

  • By: Seamus Ward

    This is a truly an inspiring series .It is so reminiscent of the methods my late father used up to the late 80s.

    I loved the series when they were first aired and they are as

    interesting today as they were then . A huge thank you to all involved in bringing the complete Victorian series to You Tube .

    My sincerest gratitude to all. Seamus Ward .

  • By: Cassandra

    Loved this series when I first saw it. Thank-you so much for pulling all these together in one place. There is also a Victorian Kitchen Garden book which I scored at a library book sale :-)

  • By: Debbie

    Those were AWESOME but those half episodes killed me! Thanks for posting them, very inspirational, informative, and entertaining.

  • By: clayton s.

    It's great to see so many of the Victorian Garden videos posted together and in order like this. I had watched a few discombobulated episodes before, but your work putting them together makes it much easier. Thanks :)

    And if you like Victorian Garden, you're almost certain to enjoy the more recently BBC produced "Victorian Farm" and "Edwardian Farm" series. It was these shows that actually got me interested in more traditional farming, and what led me to your site about 2 years ago. Both are really excellent, though I personally think Victorian Farm was a bit more educational in terms of farming techniques. And what is so great about these shows is that in addition to the historical insight into traditional farming, cooking, and building, many of the lessons learned can still be put to use by people trying to create more ecologically and environmentally thoughtful techniques today.

    Victorian Farms is available on Youtube, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NA1269IgGY0&fe

    as is Edwardian Farm, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qFjdpu4QoLo

    Though I would encourage all to buy as they really are a wonderful addition to a dvd collection.

    As an aside, the Beekman show and all its farming glory had a great impact on me as well. I'm a young gay male in the big city going to law school now, but I grew up in the rural south. It was quite powerful to see a couple who've managed to overcome the numerous dichotomies involved in being gay and managing a farm/city lifestyle; and now I daydream of having a home in the country with my partner one day.

  • By: Kathleen

    "Thank you" doesn't seen to say how much I appreciatd your thinking of us and sharing this with us. I have enjoyed viewing this fantastic series more than you could imagine. Thank you again!!! Absolutely fantastic!!!

  • By: Patsy from Illinois

    Oops, just saw where you said it wasn't available. Shoot. Okay, will spend an extra half hour a day in front of the computer to view the rest of the episodes. Glad it is winter and I have the time.

  • By: Patsy from Illinois

    Okay, I am hooked. The snow is blowing and I am thinking about making more raised beds so I can put in some of the things talked about in episode 1. I wonder if this is available on DVD? I would love to have the series. Thanks for this. God bless.

  • By: Ken Newman

    Hi guys, I'm glad you like these episodes as much as I do. I just ordered the entire series and it's companion shows "The Victorian Flower Garden: and " The Victorian Kitchen" from the UK. They will be in Region 2, PAL format. However you can watch them on your computers by switching the region code of the DVD player to Region 2.

    I have several PAL DVDs I've acquired over the years and they play fine. I port the signal to my TV via a DVI to HDMI converter. Many newer computers have a built in HDMI out so most folks won't need a converter.

    As I said before,it would be a dream if you could pull off a series like this.The format is perfection and you already have many of the components. The Beekman:(estate,farm,walled garden), tweeds, a dining table large enough for grand feasts, talented knowledgeable country gentlemen hosts. The foundation is there! We just have to work on the greenhouse, potting shed,mushroom house and possibly a bit of staff.

    Till then I guess we will all just have to hang in and hope.

    • By: Dr. Brent

      OK. You get started on that last list of things, and we'll get started on things from our end

    • By: Rei

      Thank you for supplying this information. I don’t suppose the comments linking to purchase information on Amazon UK realize the differences in DVD formatting may cause a problem. I stumbled upon this blog looking to see if the Victorian Garden Series was available in the US so I needn’t worry about the Region 2 discs not being compatible w/ my DVD player. So yes, this looks very promising! I just need to have a look on my laptop to make sure. Much appreciated!

  • By: Cathy

    I love, love, love, this series and watched all of them several months ago. Am now making my way through "The Victorian Kitchen" which features the garden/kitchen relationship. Fascinating stuff! It makes me want to go out and start double digging my beds in January. Oh, to have a glass house like Harry Dodson!

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