Prior to joining Eden Project Learning, James was the Manager of Eden Project’s off-site horticulture support base at Watering Lane Nursery. Here the nursery team were responsible for growing plants for seasonal and temporary displays, as well as for the continuous horticultural refurbishment of the biomes and the wider Eden Project estate.

The nursery also acts as the centre for Eden Project’s science, plant health and quarantine procedures. James co-supervised students from a variety of universities in their research projects focusing on Eden Project’s plant collections and resources.

James joined Eden Project in 2011 following a long career at Reading University where he supported teaching and research activities in horticulture and plant science. James completed his PhD at Reading University in 2009 having investigated the role of scheduling flowering in herbaceous plant production and subsequent post-harvest garden performance.

In addition to developing new and novel education programmes in horticulture at Eden, James’ academic interests remain in the area of using knowledge of plant physiology to aid commercial horticultural production of both edible and non-edible crops. Key interests are centred on crop and nursery production.

Prior to working at Reading University, James’ early career was in the field trials section at ICI, Bracknell, from where his interests in horticultural research and the value of education stemmed.

Publications

See a list of James's key publications

Cameron R, Wagstaffe J, Brough W & Davis A. 2008. Benchmarking current transport and distribution practices with the aim of identifying factors that determine plant quality during transit and methods to maintain quality. AHDB Horticulture.

Wagstaffe J. 2014. Servicing Eden. The Horticulturist, the Journal of the Institute of Horticulture, 23 (2), pp 8-12.

Wagstaffe, J., Cameron, R., Hadley, P. and Bisgrove, R., 2014. Do protocols for the intensive production of Coreopsis grandiflora affect its garden performance?  Scientia Horticulturae, 175, pp.236-242.

Wagstaffe J., Smith R. Micropropagation and plant conservation. The Horticulturist, the Journal of the Institute of Horticulture, 27(2), pp 17-19.