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


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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


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.


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.


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.


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.

Alex, Current Issues, Flowers, Garden Design, Garden Furniture, Gardening, Gardening Year, How To, News

Gardening has become increasingly influenced by trends over the last decade with styles and techniques seeming to vary on a similar frequency to that of clothing and it could be argued more frequently than that of the historically fluid field of interior design.

Perhaps this is influenced by the natural cycle that our gardens go through each year with every spring an opportunity to tweak, re-arrange or entirely redesign your outdoor space. This year will be no different so we have been looking into what’s going to be all the rage in the gardening world and have found some interesting trends that are going to be big in 2016.

Monochrome Palettes:

Minimalism is nothing new and has been synonymous with modern interior design since the turn of the century but 2016 is set to see this trend spread outdoors too with monochrome palettes being used to create simple, calm spaces. 50 shades of grey in your garden will mean something completely different this year with this technique working particularly well with stone water features, aged zinc, slate and subtle white flora.

Monochrome garden

See-through Fences

I found this to be an interesting concept. Fences are normally used to create privacy, so this seems kind of pointless at first. But after seeing how they can be used, I now understand. You can angle the slats so that it gives the illusion of being see-through, lets plenty of light in and inflicts a less enclosing feel on the boundary of your garden without giving you direct line of sight onto your neighbours garden, and vice versa. These now offer a modern alternative to the tradition boundary options of either A. A fence or B. A bush and also act as a real talking point.

See through fence

The Grottage

The Grottage is another idea that was previously unfamiliar to me. Grottage, a portmanteau of the words garage and cottage, is a new term used to describe what may previously have been described inelegantly as a garage conversion. I have seen some real good looking examples of these and the purpose of them can vary from a small, sun house like function to offer some shelter and comfort in the garden to more of a guest house with bed and small kitchenette. I think the former will be more popular with people choosing to transform disused garages from a storage place for tools that are seldom in action to a quaint feature where guests can relax and enjoy the garden out of the midday heat of the sun, or more likely; out of the rain.



A cool time saving concept for those who are trying to achieve the “untamed look” without having to wait for their garden to untame itself. With the untamed look set to be another hot trend this year, some clever gardenistas have come up with the idea of creating it for you, on rolls of turf, which you can then just install into your garden kind of like the horticultural version of Ikea furniture. You can order turf with a variety of wild flowers and grasses already prepared and instantly transform your neat, tidy garden into a wild, untamed all-natural experience.

turf to order

Pallet Style Furniture

This is one of my personal favourites; I enjoy the innovation behind this concept and I remember first seeing these in a bar a few years ago (they were obviously homemade) and thinking wow that’s not a bad idea! Now, companies will make them for you and you get a better quality product that still brings that intriguing bespoke feel to your garden as visitors have that eureka moment when they realise that your elegant sofa set has actually been innovatively crafted from a few humble pallets.

pallet furniture

Sustainable Features Integrated with Design

An area close to my heart – sustainable development may not interest everyone but it is something I have studied closely for a few years now and an area that is a bit more familiar to me. The sustainable trend is a trend that has threatened to take off each year for the last 5 or so but as of yet it has not hit the mainstream. Of course, there are still some wonderful examples to be found. Some real works of ingenuity and functional design creating spaces that are not just aesthetically pleasing but environmentally conscious and sustainable.

Over this time, however, ideas have been developed, products improved and now a sustainable garden is a more accessible goal. With more accessibility, and appetite seemingly as strong as ever, 2016 will hopefully be the year where this trend really takes hold.

Rain gardens have been popular in dryer parts of America for a few years now and are predicted to make an appearance over here this year. The idea is to create a shallow planted depression in your garden where rain water will run into and be held until it soaks into the soil. The advantages are that in dryer times this will help store any little bit of rain and keep your garden hydrated meaning you have to reach for the hose pipe less often. Secondly, this reduces rainwater run-off, a growing problem. As our once green land increasingly becomes concreted over or built on, rain now tends to run off along the ground much more without soaking in. This washes all the dust and other impurities along with it into the water system and can lead to sharp rises in river levels after short bursts of rain, often causing flooding.

rain garden

There are loads of other neat ideas on the web to make your garden more sustainable and a lot of these come at little or no cost (besides a bit of elbow grease).

Stay tuned to our blog as we run through other things to keep an eye on in 2016 to get the most out of your garden this year!



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

As a psychology graduate it is ironic that he understands plants better than people but a benefit for the purpose of writing this blog.

An enthusiastic gardener, all he needs now is a garden and he’ll be on the path to greatness. Alex’s special talents include superior planter knowledge and the ability to put a gardening twist on any current affairs story.

See all of Alex’s posts.

Alex, Events, How To, News


We’ve collected 6 little-known facts about the Remembrance Day poppy that you may find interesting:

1. The Royal Canadian mint issued a coin emblazoned with a red poppy in 2004 to commemorate the 100 year anniversary of the start of World War. This was the first coloured coin to be released into circulation in the world. Strangely, once-classified U.S government documents reveal that in 2007 US army contractors were so shocked by the coloured quarters released by Canada that they suspected that they were being used for “espionage purposes”. They stated that they looked odd and were filled with “something man-made that looked like nano-technology”.

Canadian remembrance coin

2. The original British Legion poppies were designed so that veterans from the war could make them even if they had lost the use of one hand.

3. Poppies flourished on the battle grounds of the First World War I in France and Belgium as rubble from the fighting released lime into the ground causing the little red flowers to pop up around the gravesites of fallen soldiers.

4. “In Flanders Fields”, the poem from which the tradition originated, was almost thrown away. Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae was conducting the funeral of a fellow officer and looked around to see nothing but death, suffering and crosses marking the resting sites of his friends engulfed in a sea of poppies. He took some time and wrote the words of the famous poem but was unhappy with it and threw it away. A fellow officer picked it up a decided to send it to a handful of newspapers in Britain and later that year Punch decided to publish it.

Flanders Field Poem

5. Poppies are an international symbol of remembrance and are distributed in 53 commonwealth countries around the world including the UK, Canada and Australia as well as in non-commonwealth countries such as France, Belgium and The Netherlands.

6. In New Zealand, they wear poppies in April. This came about when the shipment of Poppies sent over for the first Armistice Day in November 1921 arrived late and so the soldiers decided to wait until ANZAC day (April 25th) the following year.





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

As a psychology graduate it is ironic that he understands plants better than people but a benefit for the purpose of writing this blog.

An enthusiastic gardener, all he needs now is a garden and he’ll be on the path to greatness. Alex’s special talents include superior planter knowledge and the ability to put a gardening twist on any current affairs story.

See all of Alex’s posts.

Amie, Animals, Events, Gardening, Heated Clothing, How To, LED Candles, Lighting, Media, Moles, News, Pest Control,

Film fans will have noticed that arguably the most prolific, admired secret agent Britain has ever known will descend back onto our screens today. That’s right, James Bond is back, or perhaps more importantly, Daniel Craig is back, in what is rumoured to be his last appearance!

The new film, Spectre, will see James Bond travel through Mexico City and Rome, and infiltrate the existence of the sinister organisation, incidentally named SPECTRE (Special Executive for Counter-intelligence, Terrorism, Revenge and Extortion in case you were wondering).


No doubt it will be one of the biggest films of the year, but James Bond will need some gadgetry to assist him. From the high spec Aston Martin DB series to the Quantum Earpiece, he has been gifted with some of the most inventive creations over his time, but I think he could use some extra help from Primrose.

  1. Warmawear Bluetooth Controlled Heated Insoles

James Bond has to venture through the cold environment of Austria, specifically Sölden, Obertilliach (a great location if Bond fancies his hand at skiing) and Lake Altaussee, where temperatures can easily drop below freezing. Thankfully, there is an ideal solution in the form of heated insoles.

Controlled through a smartphone app (which will be no issue for James Bond on his super high tech Sony Xperia), he can warm his toes up to 35-55°C, so he needn’t worry about a little frostbite when escaping from nasty villains.  Available in four sizes, they will fit in any shoe, as they are easily adjustable to your shoe size. They are also waterproof, perfect for Bond.

  1.  Pestbye Mole Spring Trap

James Bond has encountered numerous animals throughout his time, from sharks and snakes to elephants and komodo dragons; he has seen more animals than a visitor at London Zoo. Often used by villains, as a form of weaponry or tool in their attempt to override Bond, they are far from the cute, cuddly creatures we’d expect to see. Did anyone see how big the komodo dragons were in Skyfall?


Although Primrose can’t assist with repelling komodos (although that could be in the pipeline), there is a very handy gadget which will not only protect Bond from deadly moles, but can double up as a weapon against humans (and moles, acting as spies).  Poison free, fast and effective, and double ended for maximum efficiency, this all-weather trap will bring pain and misery to any enemies that try to defeat Bond.

  1. Flicker Flame Drip Effect Wax Candles

James Bond has had a hard day hasn’t he? Fighting off killer moles, trekking through sub-zero temperatures, you’d think he would like a nice quiet evening to himself. Wait, who am I kidding, Bond would not be by himself. He is the epitome of the word lothario, from Sylvia Trench in Dr No (the very first “bond girl”) to the seductive Severine (the only “Bond girl” who is a villain).

So to set up this romantic scene, yet avoid the risk of fire (because you never know when James Bond might come under attack or have to rush off), LED candles are a superb choice. Resembling a dancing candle flame, with a realistic wax drip effect, Bond’s next lady will never suspect a thing.

If you think you will be called up by MI6 for the next death-defying mission (and I do hear James Bond will need a new lead for the next film), remember Primrose have plenty of ideas to name but a few, to help you along the way.

AmieAmie is a marketing enthusiast, having worked at Primrose since graduating from Reading University in 2014.

She enjoys all things sport. A keen football fan, Amie follows Tottenham Hotspur FC, and regularly plays for her local 5 a side football team.

To see the rest of Amie’s posts, click here.