If you’re a visitor to the RHS Chelsea Flower Show, you’ll be aware of the quality and quantity of plants that fill all the show gardens. But have you ever wondered how the designers make their selection before they play their starring roles at the show? Our reader day at growers Hortus Loci aims to give you an insight. Working in close partnership with designers, Hortus Loci begins the growing and sourcing of plants as much as a year before the show, reaching a frenzy of logistics once the garden builds begin in early May.
You’ll get a sneak peek at what’s likely to be this year’s must-have plant, as well as an insight into the likely trends at Chelsea. Nurserymen Mark Straver and Robin Wallis will talk about how the plants are selected and grown with a tour of the behind-the-scenes beds and polytunnels, and then following lunch, designers Mark Gregory and Tamara Bridge will talk with Ann-Marie Powell about their highly anticipated Chelsea gardens for 2019, their choice of plants and how their designs are progressing from concept to nerve-wracking completion.
Mark Gregory is a 21-times gold medal winner at RHS Chelsea Flower Show, including his win in 2018 as People’s Choice with his evocative Welcome to Yorkshire garden. He is returning in 2019 with another garden for the same sponsor.
Tamara Bridge won RHS Young Designer of the Year in 2015 at Tatton Park. She has since appeared twice at Chelsea with a BBC Radio 2 Feel Good garden in 2017, and a garden for Warner Edwards in 2018. For 2019 she is joining Tom Dixon to create the IKEA garden in the Great Pavilion.
Ann-Marie Powell is a Chelsea regular, both as a designer (she designed the RHS Greening Grey Britain garden in 2016) and as a presenter for the BBC. She is currently designing two new garden areas at RHS Garden Wisley.
Mark Straver and Robin Wallis set up Hortus Loci in 2011. The nursery has become known for its expertise in sourcing a wide range of plants from around the world and working with designers to supply plants for their show gardens, including Mark and Tamara this year.
Your day also includes time to browse the nursery and make your own plant selections with a special £5 discount voucher.
Price £85 per person, including lunch and refreshments.
Date Friday 26 April, 2019.
Venue The Plant Centre, Hortus Loci, Hound Green, Hook, Hampshire RG27 8LQ.
10am Arrival, coffee and cake.
10.30am Guided tour of the nursery and the Chelsea plant stock beds.
12 noon Lunch provided by on-site Hobo.co artisan café and kitchen.
1.30pm Mark Gregory and Tamara Bridge in conversation with Ann-Marie Powell.
For the rest of the afternoon you are free to explore the nursery and buy plants with your special £5 discount voucher.
You can also sign up on the day for a loyalty card entitling you to a 10 per cent discount for further purchases at The Plant Centre Hortus Loci.
Tickets and directions will be sent out prior to the event. Booking is essential. Please advise us of any dietary or accessibility requirements.
Telephone 0871 230 7156†
†Calls to this number from a BT landline will cost 13p per minute plus network extras. Call from mobiles and other providers may vary. Overseas readers should call +44 115 896 0368.
Gardens Illustrated reserves the right to change any element of any event due to circumstances beyond its reasonable control.