Alan Titchmarsh is a huge hit on North Korean TV and hopes show calms viewers

Alan Titchmarsh has told of his surprise after one of his gardening shows was broadcast in North Korea.

A 15-minute segment from the BBC’s Alan Titchmarsh’s Garden Secrets has been aired in the rogue state run by dictator Kim Jong-un.

Now the Ground Force veteran, 73, says he hopes it will have a therapeutic effect on North Korean viewers.

READ MORE: Alan Titchmarsh's life off air – happy 46-year marriage to battle with deadly disease

He said: "I never imagined that my programmes would reach North Korea, but hopefully the calming nature of British gardening will be well received there."

In the clip shown on KCTV, the regime’s television service, Alan is at Hatfield House, Herts, exploring 17th century gardening techniques.

He then plants a flower bed, arranged in the shape of a leaf, with three types of thyme.

He also interviews the estate’s head gardener, David Beaumont, creates a topiary cube and plants a small fruit tree.

Analyst Martyn Williams, who monitors North Korea’s TV output, was also surprised to see the clip.

He said: "There is very little foreign programming. It’s usually restricted to sports and science, and technology-type reports.

"This falls into the latter category. They have short features on non-controversial topics."

Mr Williams continued: 'It's difficult to know about the exact source of the programming, but in general I believe North Korea does care about programming rights.

'It's possible it was licensed to KCTV or perhaps a South Korean broadcaster got all-Korea rights and shared it."

According to the BBC website, the gardening programme was last broadcast here in August 2014.

After working as a professional gardener and a gardening journalist, Alan established himself as a media personality through appearances on television gardening programmes.

He has developed a diverse writing and broadcasting career.

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