The Royal Horticultural Society has appointed Jim Gardiner as director of horticulture.
Mr Gardiner will have overall responsibility for the policy and management of horticultural standards, oversee the RHS plant committees and the society's plant trials programme, and fulfil an ambassadorial role for the organisation. He will also retain his responsibilities as chief curator of the society.
RHS president Giles Coode-Adams said: "Jim Gardiner is one of the most highly regarded plantsmen in the country, with an international reputation. His appointment to this new post reflects the fact that horticultural excellence sits at the heart of the society's mission to inspire everyone to garden. Jim will act as a champion for plantsmanship for the RHS, and ensure we build on success already achieved at our award-winning gardens."
Mr Gardiner worked as a curator at the RHS for 22 years of his 40-year career in horticulture. He has published on a wide variety of horticultural subjects, regularly lectures in the UK and abroad and is president of the Magnolia Society International.
He said: "I have learnt an enormous amount at the RHS. I'm delighted to take on a role that gives me the opportunity to share that knowledge, together with a passion for plants, with colleagues across the organisation and throughout the gardening world."