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22nd Annual General Meeting
Athens, Greece
20 to 23 October 2016

Programme of Events     Optional Tour     Registration     Books and Book Reviews


The results of the election for the new Administrative Committee which will hold office until October 2019 were as follows:

  • Committee members: Jean-Pierre Bouchez, Lefteris Dariotis, Caroline Davies, Vivien Psaropoulou, Jill Yakas.
  • Reserves: John Mole, Simon Rackham, Margaret Lim Zafiropulo.

At the first meeting of the new Administrative Committee it was decided that the office-bearers would be as follows:

  • President: Caroline Davies
  • Vice President: Jean-Pierre Bouchez
  • Councillor: Lefteris Dariotis
  • Secretary: Vivien Psaropoulou
  • Treasurer: Jill Yakas


Caroline Davies
A passionate gardener, I love sharing my interest. I started a garden tour programme in 1986 while editor of publications at ‘Life.Be in it’ in Melbourne, Australia. In 1991 I began my own garden and wildflower tours in the Antipodes, and from 1997, with my late husband, extended them to various parts of Europe until 2013. I joined the MGS in 1996. With English and Greek parentage, I have a deep feeling for Greece and its flora. My book The Eternal Garden (1989, Hill of Content, Melbourne) pursued a mystical approach to garden history.

Jean-Pierre Bouchez
I enjoy gardens, especially those that are Mediterranean-focused - now becoming a must in California with its severe drought. As a member of the MGS, I also enjoy the way our organisation tries to influence the thinking of gardeners toward more water-preserving designs for our California climate and other areas of the world. If elected, I would like to promote educational activities through the journal and visits, reinforce the MGS international mission, and work toward a better cohesion of its members. Hopefully, with my work in the Northern California branch, contacts with French gardeners and my work experience in an international industry, I can help the AC in some of these endeavours.

Eleftherios Dariotis  (also known by his Facebook name Liberto Dario)
Having always felt a special attraction to the plant world, I have managed to fill my life with plants, through enriching my basic plant production studies in Greece with an M.Sc. in Plant Biology from the University of California, Davis and another one in Horticulture from the University of Reading in England, creating and maintaining two private gardens in Paiania, Greece, travelling extensively around the world and especially in Greece's diverse habitats to see and photograph the native plants, leading plant tours, giving plant talks, maintaining a small bulb and seed nursery business and interacting with plant people around the world. My plant interests include the all-time favourite and inexhaustible Salvia species, along with a love for South African bulbs and mediterranean-climate shrubs and perennials that I continuously introduce and try in my adverse local gardening conditions.

Vivien Psaropoulou
I have been a member of the MGS since 1996; through it I have enjoyed meeting other like-minded people who garden in a mediterranean climate, and have learned the benefit of using native plants gardening in the extreme temperatures where I live north of Athens. Born in Australia, I came to Greece in 1973 with the Australian Embassy, and have both Australian and Greek citizenship; I speak Greek. I served as MGS Treasurer from 1999 to 2007 and have been General Secretary from 2013 until now. I would like to see the aims of the MGS maintained and for it to continue as the same informative, friendly society, recognised at an international level; I also champion the preservation of Sparoza.

Jill Yakas
English by birth, I have lived in Athens for 45 years, running my own art gallery and publishing fine art cards. I am a founding member of the MGS and have been Treasurer since 2010. My traditional Kifissia garden has been a haven for me and many other visitors to exhibitions and tea parties over the years. I have survived some turbulent times in Greece and plan to go on living here. I have Greek nationality and speak Greek.

John Mole
I am an Irish author and screenwriter - see My books currently in print are focused on the Aegean. I have had a small garden in Greece for 40 years, and an even smaller one in London. My current interest is the monastery gardens of Mount Athos.

Simon Rackham
I have been a member of the MGS since moving to Greece in 2005, and would like to help the Society preserve its roots, while engaging with a global membership.
I am a Landscape Architect and Fellow of the Landscape Institute, and have worked on four continents. My Greek practice's summer-dry planting won the Best Built Project award at the 2009 International Landscape Architecture Exhibition, Belgrade.

Margaret Lim Zafiropulo
I was born and brought up in Penang, Malaysia, and educated at Vassar College, New York and the London School of Economics, then joining the academic staff of LSE as research assistant in the History Department. I switched to law, qualifying as a solicitor, and worked in the City of London. I have been interested in plants and growing things since childhood, initially in a large tropical garden in Penang and later in a small over-stuffed London garden. I moved with my husband, Alexander, to Athens in 2012, accompanied, in a large green van, by the greater part of my London garden. Since then, I have been trying to learn how to make a garden and, more importantly, keep it alive, in the very different conditions of central Athens. I joined the MGS to help find out how.
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