The three deaths and the one death alluded to from the past in this episode bring the total in the series to date to 51.
Elspeth Inkpen is poisoned with aconite mixed into pesto sauce on a plate of tagliatelle. Aconite, a common wild and garden plant also known as Monkshood or Wolfsbane, is an extremely potent poison, known by the Greeks as the Queen of Poisons. The aconite used to poison her was picked from Elspeth's own garden.
Death by aconite poisoning is not pleasant, as DSI Barnaby mentions. The victim will experience numbness and tingling in the mouth and throat, both of which will feel parched. If the dose is large, it produces a severe burning sensation from throat to abdomen. The tingling feeling soon spreads to the hands and feet, and subsequently the whole body until the victim feels as though she is being flayed. This is followed by a loss of power in the legs and the dulling of sight and hearing, although the victim remains conscious until death comes. Muscular twitching may result in convulsions. Aconite will poison all the organs, but death is usually from cardiac arrythmia.
Naomi Inkpen: If you were a GENTLEMAN you'd move to allow my daughter and I to sit together.
Augustus Deverell: If you were a LADY I shouldn't hesitate.
Susan Millard: There ARE still some seats further back, Mrs Inkpen.
Naomi Inkpen: Further back? I have not sat "further back" in my entire life.
- Long Crendon, Buckinghamshire (Midsomer Deverell)
- Nether Winchendon, Buckinghamshire
The murder victims:
1. Felicity Inkpen - hit on head with shovel
2. Elspeth Inkpen - poisoned
3. Gerald Bennett - suffocated
The historical murder of Cynthia Bennett is also features in the episode - she was strangled with a pair of tights.
The ancient house used as Inkpen Manor in Garden of Death is The Manor House at Long Crendon, Buckinghamshire.