The Decline of the Evil Weevil and The 5 best things at the Edible Garden Show 2016


29-I pod 031Following on from my last post where I discovered an outbreak of Vine Weevil in my Strawberry tubs I set about dumping infected plants, and dumping the compost away from my garden, some new Strawberry Plants ordered and a recommended chemical purchased and applied.

A necessary evil.?
A necessary evil.?

I’ve also started to receive parcels of plants that I ordered earlier in the year.

Newly arrived baby Fuchsia plants.
Newly arrived baby Fuchsia plants.
12-I phone late march 014
Potted and growing on.

12 new Fuchsia plants, a mixture of Bush and Uprights. I’m hoping to go potastic this year and make up a few nice containers of mixed plants. (Vine Weevil Permitting.!)

The Fuchsia plants came from a mail order company that I have used in the past called Potash Nursery they also attend many of the major flower shows throughout the year.

Seed sowing has started....
Seed sowing has started….

I was hoping for some settled weather over Easter so I could potter in the garden and faff with a bit of seed sowing in the greenhouse, however storm Katie blew through last night dumping almost an inch of rain on the garden leaving everything soggy and a bit meh.

So I just thought I’d show you some of the best things I spotted during my recent, and first visit to the Edible Garden Show which was held recently at Stoneleigh park in Warwickshire.

I visited on the Saturday.
I visited on the Saturday.

 

1st.

The first item that caught my eye was this…

The Garden Scoot in bright purple.
The Garden Scoot in bright purple.

A seat on wheels that you can move about sidewards on. (I just thought it had big eyes).

Available from Garden Scoot.

2nd.

This dinky living picture frame and these splendid seed packets on the Sea Spring Seeds stand.

3rd.

Kitchen Garden Magazine stand.
Kitchen Garden Magazine stand.

Kitchen Garden Magazine.

This stand in-particular stood out to me as it was nicely set up with lots of little offers on.

 

4th.

I also went to a couple of talks, and the one below stood out to me quite positively.

The talk was called Growing in small spaces by Mark Abbot-Compton.

A Talk by this chap.
A Talk by this chap.

Mark runs a  website called Learn How to Garden,  Gardening Courses.com it is pioneering teaching using internet courses that give step by step tuition to beginner gardeners right through to the more technical aspects of horticulture and an online monthly interactive publication.

His talk was very interesting, and interesting in which an ‘old hand’ like myself a learned few new bits of info, such as the reason why seed packets state why Cabbage crops should be 2ft apart*.

5th.

Beautifully designed seed packets from Meadow in my Garden.
Beautifully designed seed packets from Meadow in my Garden.

Each of these packets of seed looked like little works of art to me.

The stall was Meadow in my Garden. but  I noticed from the packet that the contents were supplied by Thomas Etty Esq. Heritage Seeds.

 

So that was the 5 best things I saw, to be honest there were lots of interesting things, and many of them were quite pricey for what they were.

The only purchase I made however was a subscription to a magazine which gave out extra seeds if you subscribed at the show. Also it appeared to me that every other stall sold Chilli pepper seedlings, as I’ve already got an increasing population of chilli seedlings in my greenhouse I did without.

 

 

*Cabbages are stated to be 2ft apart because the wheelbase of Massey Ferguson tractors are 4ft apart, and it was so the tractors could move about the fields for harvesting & spraying etc….

 

Bye for now…

Delphiniums and Disappointments – musings on Gardeners World Live Show 2013


Delphiniums and Disappointments – musings on Gardeners World Live Show 2013

Delphiniums from Blackmore & Langdon
Delphiniums from Blackmore & Langdon

On Wednesday 12th of June I took my usual pilgrimage to the NEC to visit The Gardeners World Live Show. I’ve been to all but 1 of the shows, I think I missed 2009 when I was gallivanting across America.

I have always tried to visit the show on the first day, this is due to the fact that I only really go to the show to visit the Nurseries and any choice plants tend to sell out after only a few days.  The Show is also one of the nearest to me, only 40 mins up the Motorway, whereas Malvern, Hampton Court and several other decent Shows are up to several hours away.

Lots to see
Lots to see

I set off into the show just after it opened and made straight for the Floral Marquee, according to the show guide there were 100’s of stands, but with all the obvious room in the marquee I think the stands had either shrunk or a few years ago there were almost twice as many.

I usually do a grid system walk, up and down each aisle so as not to miss anything, but the marquee was quite empty for a good hour or two after the show opened that I was able to do several walks by each nursery.

For the first time ever in my history of visiting I did not buy anything for the first two hours, normally I’ve made two or three visits back to my car with purchases.

Hostas Galore.
Hostas Galore.
Hardys Display
Hardy’s Display

As usual Hardy’s Nurseries put on a Gold Medal winning display.

Penstemon heterophyllum 'Catherine Del A Mare'
Penstemon heterophyllum ‘Catherine Del A Mare’

The above Penstemon was lovely on Hardy’s stand, I don’t know why I did not buy one.

Himalayan Primula.
Himalayan Primula.
Scleranthus Uniflorus
Scleranthus Uniflorus

There were all the usual stalls with lovely plants on display, Ferns, Alpines, Grasses, Mixed Cottage Garden plants, an Aquatics stand, Hostas, Fuchsias, and Lupins were available. But I’m sure several regular stall holders were missing, I’m sure there was a Hosta stall missing and many Mixed perennial stall holders were not there.

Instead in the middle of the Marquee, taking up quite a bit of room was a large floral display.

Lord of the Rings display
Lord of the Rings display

The display was called enlightenment, and it was build by Birmingham parks Department,, it was celebrating the opening of the Library of Birmingham in September 2013, and was focused on JRR Tolkien and other Birmingham Authors.

I found my usual stand with my favorite plants on display and for sale.

Sarracenias
Sarracenias

Another Gold winning display from Hampshire Carnivorous Plants.

I made two of my three purchases from this stand, a Sarracenia Flava ‘Maxima, and a Sarracenia cv Juthatip Soper x Sarracenia Leucophylla.!  Which basically has lots of pink and white bits in it.

Sarracenia Flava with a red throat.
Sarracenia Flava with a red throat.

There were also quite a few Cacti and succulent stands, I was surprised at how expensive many of the plants where.

Cacti.
Cacti.
Very Bright Yellow.
Very Bright Yellow.
Godetia plant, from seed only.
Godetia plant, from seed only.

This gorgeous Godetia was on the Hardy’s Plants Stand, but they were only selling seed of it, not any plants.  Shame really.

Meconopsis.
Meconopsis.
West Country Lupins
West Country Lupins

I had gone to the show with the intention of buying a few Lupins as so many of mine had failed to get through the winter, however the only nursery selling them wanted £7 per plant or £15 for three plants. So all I could afford was a packet of seeds instead.

I decided after several hours in the floral marquee that I had better see some of the rest of the show, I used the map in my show guide to make sure I walked by every stall outside, I found a few plant stalls in the newly created area called the RHS Plant Village, which in previous years was called the plant market and was set up in the main hall, however this year’s plant village version has considerably smaller.

I usually don’t pay much attention to the show gardens, they are usually very busy with people fawning over the TV celebrities who  are filming for the TV program Gardeners World on BBC2.  However this year the BBC were not getting involved with the show, and I was told it was due to ‘cutbacks’.    I set off in search of the show gardens mainly for this blog.

What I found was quite underwhelming in my opinion…..

Gardeners World Live 2013 051

This was called In Perspective, I really had to try hard not to laugh out loud at this one….. I called it What’s the point.!

Gardeners World Live 2013 062

This was called Wrapped up in willow and Water.

Gardeners World Live 2013 055

Sketch and reality.

And finally.. the best in show….

Gardeners World Live 2013 046

The Austerity Garden.!

Told You.!
Told You.!

Overall I was quite disappointed with this years show, Considering how much the entry fee was, on top of that the £10 to park my car, and the noticeable lack of nurseries in general, which appeared to have been replaced with stalls selling plastic ornaments, Solar panels, and for some reason a stall selling disco lights.

I’m sure that real Gardeners and hard core plants people with seek inspiration from other shows and plant fairs.

I’ve decided not to buy a ticket next year and try to get to the RHS Tatton Show instead, I cannot go this year as I’m working.

Thank you for reading this far, and may I leave you with a pair of Cacti Bum Cheeks.

Sweet Cheeks.
Sweet Cheeks.

 

Thanks for reading.

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