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We’re shaped by what we read; at home, in our world views and in our careers. In this series the Wheeler Centre and ABC Radio National’s The Book Show aim to uncover those links between work and words.

Presented and chaired by acclaimed broadcaster Ramona Koval, the discussions will feature high-profile professionals talking about the books that have been important to them and have influenced their profession.


Michael McCoy

Michael McCoy is a garden designer, author, broadcaster, speaker and obsessive home gardener, who writes for the Age. He is a regular contributor to Your Garden, Gardening Australia and the Age. He has designed gardens in Victoria, NSW, and Western Australia for the likes of Paul Keating and Leo Sch... Read more

Stephen Ryan

Stephen Ryan is the presenter of ABC TV’s Gardening Australia.

He ran his family’s nursery until he started his own in 1980. He proudly tends his garden ‘Tugurium’ in Macedon, Victoria. He’s a collector of antique gardening books.

Ramona Koval

Ramona Koval is a writer who has worked as a journalist and broadcaster. Her most recent books are A Letter to Layla: Travels to our Deep Past and Near Future, Bloodhound: Searching For My Father, and By the Book: A Reader’s Guide to Life (all published by Text). She was the editor of two volumes ... Read more

Terry Smyth

Terry Smyth has worked for 22 years as a horticulturist and curator of the Southern Chinese Plant Collection at the Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne. Terry has collected seed, plants and herbarium specimens for the gardens on four collecting trips to South China in the 1990’s. She’s collaborated ... Read more


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The Wheeler Centre acknowledges the Wurundjeri Woi Wurrung people of the Kulin Nation as the Traditional Owners of the land on which the Centre stands. We acknowledge and pay our respects to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and their Elders, past and present, as the custodians of the world’s oldest continuous living culture.