Celebrations And Holidays, Competitions, Current Issues, Decoration, Events, Flowers, Garden Design, Garden Furniture, Gardening, Gardening Year, Hampton Court Flower Show, Liam, News, Planters, Planting, Plants, Ponds, RHS, Water Features

The Primrose team attended this year’s RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show to catch up with and discuss the latest gardening trends as well as engage with some of the nation’s favourite horticultural festivities. We endured the sweltering heat and odd glass of champagne to hopefully bring you the inspiration for your perfect garden.

Tropical

On display at this year were a vibrant showcase of exotic landscapes seemingly plucked from some far-off jungle and dropped onto the grounds of Hampton Court Palace. However, tropical gardening is something which is growing in popularity in the UK and not just the odd palm tree.

Tropical plants are, in fact, surprisingly hardy and many of them can tough it out through a British winter. Creating a tropical aesthetic in your very own garden provides a sense of exotic escape in what can be an otherwise cold and stressful routine. More and more urban dwellers are looking to bamboos, ferns, sarracenias and zantedeschias to create these backyard get-aways.

Many of these tropical varieties are used to battling it out below the canopy for little light and nutrients and so can thrive even in the heart of the concrete jungle. For gardens everywhere tropical planting offers height, depth and an abundance of life. Water-features and lighting perfect the ambience offering various tones and sounds.

Prairie Planting

A major trend at this year’s show was Prairie Planting; the combination of wild flowers and grasses in a seemingly loose planting scheme. Pockets of meadow teeming with wildlife were a persistent feature offering a wholesome, wild but almost gentle beauty.

There are an abundance of prairie plants which are native to the UK all of which are hardy enough to thrive in poor soils in times of drought and frost. Therefore, they make a perfect low-maintenance garden with a more natural aesthetic. Eryngiums, Echinaceas, Achilleas and Salvias among others offer a rich pallet of colours while various grasses deliver height and texture.

The prairie garden is also a fantastic way for you to join the noble crusade of saving our native bee and butterfly populations. Already an incentive which is sweeping  the country, prairie patches are being planted in local initiatives to save our ecosystems. With some bordering and creative features thrown in prairie planting also helps make an award-winning garden too.

Reclaimed

Here is a trend which certainly taps into the prevalent vintage culture of today. Adding a certain character to outdoor spaces it creates a more relaxing atmosphere allowing the mind to wonder amongst the assortment of bizarre objects strewn across the flower beds.  Big concrete planters, weedy patios, even bits of recycled car parts and vintage furniture make an appearance.

Once the hardware is in the garden is certainly easier to manage than a pristine and strictly coordinated garden while keeping a sense of style and purpose. Ground covering and climbing plants are encouraged to grow over. One may find a bike wheel or an old Coca-Cola sign amongst the wild grasses. There is certainly space to let your imagination roam.

Rust was a consistently strong contender throughout the show along with prairie planting and the reclaimed aesthetic is a natural ally to both these features.

Jorge at PrimroseLiam works in the buying team at Primrose. He is passionate about studying other cultures, especially their history. A lover of sports his favourite pass-time is football, either playing or watching it! In the garden Liam is particularly interested in growing your own food.

See all of Liam’s posts.

Current Issues, Events, Gardening Year, George, Hampton Court Flower Show, News, RHS

Now that the Christmas madness is over, it’s time to settle down and turn to the year ahead. Whether you want to plan an outing or stock up on plants for your own garden, there are plenty of upcoming gardening events to suit you. We’ve put together a calendar of garden events in 2016 so every month this year can be packed full of horticultural days out!

Gardening Events 2016 Calendar

2016 Gardening Events

January

30-31 Big Garden Birdwatch – contribute to the RSPB’s annual survey by recording the birds you spot in your garden over an hour this weekend.

February

6 – 6 Mar Orchid Festival at Kew Gardens – visit the Princess of Wales Conservatory as it is transformed into a paradise of tropical Brazilian plants.
16 – 17 RHS London Early Spring Plant Fair – get your garden going with colourful winter and early spring flowers at Lawrence Hall.
26 – 27 RHS London Botanical Art Show – view the world’s best botanical masterpieces on display and meet the artists at Lindley Hall.

March

11 – 13 The Edible Garden Show – be inspired to grow and cook your own produce with this event at Stoneleigh Park in Warwickshire.
12 RHS On Tour at Wimbledon Farmers’ Market – pick up expert gardening advice and locally produced, quality food at this free event.

April

1 – 2 RHS London Spring Plant Extravaganza – find exciting new plants and see magnificent orchid displays from the experts at Lindley Hall.
15 – 17 RHS Show Cardiff – visit the stunning show gardens at Bute Park and Cardiff Castle, take part in family activities and browse many gardening product stalls.
21 – 24 Harrogate Spring Flower Show – take in the show gardens, live entertainment and displays in the plant pavilion before a bit of shopping.

May

5 – 8 RHS Malvern Spring Festival – explore gardening workshops, fabulous show gardens and family events in the stunning Malvern Hills.
24 – 28 RHS Chelsea Flower Show – visit the most famous gardening exhibit with world-class show gardens from upcoming and established designers to inspire and amaze.

June

3 – 4 RHS London Rose Show – admire displays by specialist rose growers and pick up tips on how to grow your own at Lawrence Hall.
3 – 5 Gardening Scotland – sample all that Scotland has to offer in gardening and outdoor living at the national gardening festival, held in the Royal Highland Centre in Edinburgh.
16 – 19 Gardeners’ World Live – hear talks from your favourite Gardeners’ World presenters, be inspired by a variety of show gardens and pick up gardening gifts at the NEC in Birmingham.
25 – 26 Woburn Abbey Garden Show – hone your gardening skills with advice from experts and browse a selection of wonderful plants from UK nurseries in the abbey gardens.

July

5 – 10 RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show – wander through a butterfly dome, let the kids enjoy space-themed activities and explore the show gardens.
20 – 24 RHS Flower Show Tatton Park – get ideas from the show gardens to inspire your designs and witness up-and-coming talent in industry competitions.

August

13 – 14 Great Comp Summer Show – enjoy a summer day out browsing local art, plants from nurseries and ornamental gardenware.

September

16 – 18 Harrogate Autumn Flower Show – join live talks and demonstrations, visit the show gardens for autumnal inspiration and be wowed by the giant vegetable competition.
24 – 25 Malvern Autumn Show – enjoy the best of the season’s country food with live demonstrations and stalls, view the floral displays and pick up gardening advice for winter from RHS experts.

October

4 – 5 RHS London Harvest Festival – celebrate autumn with live music, apple bobbing, seasonal food, giant vegetables and gardening advice.
28 – 29 RHS London Shades of Autumn Show – explore horticultural art and design reflecting the best of autumn colours, with planting ideas to brighten your own garden too.

November

12 – 13 RHS London Urban Garden Show – buy beautiful tropical plants and learn how to care for them all year round at this new event in Lindley Hall.

December

17 – 18 RHS London Christmas Show – grab a few last minute Christmas gifts at this new event at Lawrence Hall, featuring plants, seasonal food and gardening sundries.

So there are plenty of wonderful days out for gardening enthusiasts coming up in 2016. A lot of these events have discounts and offers for early booking, so now’s the time to check them out and buy your tickets. We hope you enjoy these outings and have a fantastic year!

George at PrimroseGeorge works in the Primrose marketing team. As a lover of all things filmic, he also gets involved with our TV ads and web videos.

George’s idea of the perfect time in the garden is a long afternoon sitting in the shade with a good book. A cool breeze, peace and quiet… But of course, he’s usually disturbed by his energetic wire fox terrier, Poppy!

He writes about his misadventures in repotting plants and new discoveries about cat repellers.

See all of George’s posts.

Competitions, Hampton Court Flower Show, Harriet

Garden Story Contest - Winner!

We really enjoyed reading your garden stories in our competition – thank you to everyone who sent one in! It was a tough decision, but we would like to say congratulations to our winner Lorraine F. who sent us this touching story about how she got into gardening:

I’m a patio/balcony gardener as well as studying gardening and I’m also disabled with my knee. My Mum never, ever thought I would stick with gardening after a Cousin of mine set me a challenge in May 2014 to grow some tomatoes and I was scared stiff lol.

Hence over a year later I am hooked on gardening, I don’t even have my nail extensions no more nor extensions in my hair I’m just all natural now thanks to my gardening and proving my Mum wrong.

Gardening is also good for bipolar sufferers to well it’s helped me so now I’m helping the Mentally ill adults to do gardening to with the Master Gardener Project to give something back for how gardening has helped me. I’m even running a gardening group on Facebook to show you can do gardening even in the smallest space.

Lorraine won two tickets for the show, and has shared some fantastic photos with us which we have loved looking through! Here are some of our favourites:

Harriet works in the Primrose marketing team, mainly on online marketing.

She’s a big fan of reading, TV quiz shows, and is a highly experienced user of gardens (especially when it involves lounging outside on a sunny afternoon).

As a trivia lover whose favourite book when growing up was an illustrated factopedia (true story), she likes to write for the blog about interesting things she has found out whilst wandering the internet.

See all of Harriet’s posts.

Cat, Events, Flowers, Gardening, Hampton Court Flower Show, RHS

Primrose visits the RHS Hampton Court Flower Show!

Rosemary went to the RHS Hampton Court Flower Show. These are some of her pictures.

It was particularly exciting to meet up with some of the nurseries that sell their plants on the Primrose website, such as Amulree Nursery [gold medal winners] and Taylors Clematis [silver-gilt flora winners]

What were your highlights?

wedding-meCat works in the marketing team and is responsible for online marketing, social media and the newsletter.

She spends most of her time reading about a variety of interesting facts, such as oddly named Canadian towns, obscure holidays and unusual gardening.

She mostly writes about Primrose news and current events.

See all of Cat’s posts.

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