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Bevis Bawa's Sri Lankan masterpiece - The Brief Garden

Sri Lanka is a plantsman's paradise. Located at the tip of India and hanging like a tear drop from the mainland, it offers lush green landscapes, leafy vistas and acres of forest where elephants roam free. The whole country is a garden, fringed with perfect beaches and populated by smiling locals. Foreigners have formed an integral part of its long history and it was variously colonised by the Portuguese, Dutch (very briefly the French) and the British. Ceylon, as it was previously known, only gained independence in 1948 and became Sri Lanka in 1972, but then became the battle field for one of the worst civil wars in history, which left the country in ruins. The war only ended in 2009 and the country is still re-shaping itself, but is now one of the most popular holiday destinations in the world. But this troubled history did not deter plantsman nor gardeners. Sri Lanka has historically produced fruit, vegetable and raw material crops that are unrivalled and there are man-made gard…

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