Last week we celebrated our 10th year exhibiting at RHS Hampton Court. Set in the grounds of the historic Hampton Court Palace which was famously the home of Henry VIII. The palace provides an impressive architectural venue for not only enjoying the atmospheric show gardens but also live music over the water and fountains, and plenty of retail therapy opportunities with the extensive range of trade stands. See the RHS’ best bits here…Youtube
We were all inspired at our first stop of the day – ‘The Edible Eden Kitchen Garden’ – Designed by Chris Smith of Pennard Plants, Burpee Seeds and Lubera. This garden boasted a variety of colourful ripening fruit and vegetables and a sea of yellow sunflowers, whilst produce from the garden was used for daily cooking demonstrations and sweet tomato tastings. Pennard Plants grow in our compost.
Pauline had a quick chance to grab a cup of tea in the Rose Garden Tearoom where she was ‘blown away by the scent in The Rose Garden containing the most perfect roses I’ve ever seen’. Here was the place to acquire top rose growing advice from exhibitors such as David Austin Roses, Peter Beales and Fryer’s Roses who released a new elegant white rose ‘The Little Angel’.
We all took a wander round the story-telling show gardens which highlighted topical issues of Climate Change – the Global Impact Garden, Believe in Tomorrow and The Smart Meter Garden; the importance of a wild garden – The Wild Garden and BBC Springwatch Garden, and encouraging pollinators to thrive – The Urban Pollinator Garden.
‘The floral marquee’ was a wall-to-wall display of exotic floral colour> ‘Brighter Blooms’ picked up a Gold Medal for their impressive Zantedeschia Lily exhibit as did Hogarth Hostas – their 3rd RHS award this year. Hogarth Hostas use a blend of Wool Compost and Lakeland Gold to grow their Gold medal award winning Hostas.
Back at the Dalefoot stand, we were honoured to host a successful book signing of the recently-released ‘The Climate Change Garden’. Co-author Sally Morgan was taking questions on how we, as gardeners, can start to adapt to Climate Change.
On Press Day, Lord Gardiner of Kimble, Parliamentary Under Secretary (DEFRA) headed to our stand where Simon took the opportunity to reinforce the urgent need to stop using peat and also outlined our nationwide Peatland Restoration work.
Lastly, Special thanks to Charlie at Westdale Nurseries for providing us with some impressive Bougainvilleas for our stand.