Gardening, animal and enviromental expert
Don Burke is the face of gardening and all things outdoors in Australia. The award winning gardening guru turned daggy jumpers into a fashion statement, produced Backyard Blitz and Renovation Rescue, published numerous books and won countless awards along the way.
Don Burke is a lively and engaging speaker who entertains audiences from all walks of life with stories of his travels, the lifestyle genre of television, gardening, the environment, animals and animal breeding.
About Don Burke:
Don's broadcasting career began while he was working at Bonds Nursery, when he was invited to do occasional appearances on Channel Nine. In 1987 he presented the first episode of Burke's Backyard on Australian TV.
In 1990, he formed CTC Productions to produce not only Burke's Backyard, but also Backyard Blitz (winner of six Logies) and Renovation Rescue. Many well-known TV personalities had their careers launched by Don's production company, CTC, including Harry Cooper, Scott Cam, Jamie Durie, Nigel Ruck and Jody Rigby.
Burke's Backyard ran on Channel Nine for 17 years before the show was axed. In its time, the show won six Logies and two People's Choice Awards. The show was the first to cover a mix of segments dealing with all aspects of Australian life from gardening, pets and backyard living to cooking, craft & interior design. During the span of the show, Don travelled and presented programs from Papua New Guinea, New Zealand, England, Ireland, Italy, France, Greece, Mexico, USA, Bali, Japan, Hawaii, Spain and China. As well as screening in Australia, the program screened on the BBC in England, the U.S and many other countries.
While Burke's Backyard won six Logie Awards, through its environmental content, Don won the Banksia Award for Media Contribution to the Environment. He also won the Variety Club's TV Presenter of the Year in 1990.
Five years after the show was axed, Channel Nine reinstated Don in the face of public demand, as presenter of a Burke's Backyard-style segment on A Current Affair.
Outside of his TV work, Don has been Associate Editor of the trade journal Australian Horticulture for five years and Editor in Chief of Burke's Backyard Magazine which began in 1998. He is the author of more than 10 books, including The Lazy Gardener, six volumes of Burkes Backyard Information Guide, Home Grown, Indigenous and Burke's Backyard Ultimate Book of Fact Sheets.
Don presented radio programs for 8 years on 2UE, winning a Pater Award after his first year at 2UE. He presents Burke's Backyard on Radio 2UE (AM 954) and affiliated stations nationally on Saturday and Sunday mornings.
Don helped set up the National Registration Authority for Agricultural & Veterinary Chemicals (now the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority), and has been a board member of Landcare Australia. He is the Chairman of the Australian Environment Foundation.
Don Burke talks about:
- The Lifestyle genre of television - going behind the scenes
- Horticulture/landscaping - Australian native plants
- Great gardens of the world
- Environment, animals and animal breeding
- Anecdotes about travelling and filming worldwide
Don was fantastic. The audience loved him because he was so friendly and gave so freely of his time. He focused his talk around local issues which the audience appreciated.