Monty Don confession: How TV gardener’s ‘strict’ upbringing impacted parenting

Monty Don is one of Britain’s best-known TV gardeners. He’s become something of a broadcasting legend having appeared on our screens for over two decades.

In 2003, he was made presenter of the BBC’s flagship gardening show, Gardeners’ World.

He’s presented it ever since, a career with the broadcasting company spanning 17 years.

In 2011, as if predicting a future lockdown world, Monty began presenting the show from the comfort of his Herefordshire home.

Although clearly committed to the show, it’s not the only horticultural avenue Monty has explored.

In 2014 he became one of the main hosts of the Chelsea Flower Show coverage.

This role was, however, disrupted this year after organisers cancelled the flower show because of the coronavirus outbreak.

Flower enthusiasts who were taking part in the competition were left distraught, many having prepared for over a year.

They found some solace in the show being held remotely – showing off their creations from home.

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And, Monty was able to present a handful of the days from his home too – so not all was lost.

His dedication to the gardening world has inevitably shaped his way of life, and likely rubbed off on his three children, Adam, Tom, and Freya.

Last year, he was granted his wish for a grandchild – a boy, George Jack Don.

During a 2016 Radio Times interview, Monty revealed how he’s intentionally kept an informal relationship with his children.


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He revealed that his parenting ethos has, in part, been a result of a “strict” upbringing.

He said: “We’ve always had a fairly informal relationship.

“I work with Adam, and speak to him every day as he runs the farm.

“He’s lambing at the moment.

“The others – I’ll ring up, we chat, share books, music, tell each other what we’ve done and seen.

“I can remember my own mother snorting: ‘I don’t want to be your best friend! I’m your mother!’

“I was brought up very strictly.

“I love my children, I adore them, I would die for them, kill for them.

“We’re very honest with each other.

“At times that’s brutal; at others it’s liberating and enlightening; we are good friends.”

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