Wednesday 22 July 2015

Jeff Ollerton with Carol Klein

Plant Odysseys, a new BBC2 gardening programme start​ing on Monday, will feature the University of Northampton’s Professor of Biodiversity Jeff Ollerton​.

Presented by Gardeners’ World regular Carol Klein, the four-part series has been produced by Oxford Scientific Films.

In the first episode, Professor Ollerton and Carol make a rose perfume based on an ancient Roman recipe dating back to circa AD 77–79. The perfume recipe was published in the book Natural History (Naturalis Historia) by Pliny the Elder. Professor Ollerton explains where in the flower the wonderful smells originate and how odour plumes spread in order to entice passing pollinating insects.

Professor Ollerton is no stranger to BBC Television, having consulted on and featured in many programmes, including Bees, Butterflies and Blooms. He has worked with presenter Carol Klein before, on a special episode of Gardeners’ World entitled The Science of Gardening. He has also featured on radio’s Farming Today.

Professor Ollerton commented: “Filming for television is always fun and brings the work that we do at the University to a much wider audience. And I learned a lot about Roman perfumes!”

Carol is a champion of organic, wildlife friendly gardening and she tirelessly campaigns to ensure gardeners consider the impact their activities have on the environment. Her work was recognised by the University of Northampton in 2012 when she received an Honorary Fellowship, presented at the spring graduation ceremony by Professor Ollerton.

Episode one of Plant Odysseys​ will air at 7pm on Monday 27 July. For further information, visit the BBC Media Centre.

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