Garden Shows With A Difference
Ever since we started selling patio furniture, we’ve attended garden shows to sell our ranges of metal garden furniture. These range from the big traditional ones such as RHS Chelsea Flower Show and RHS Hampton Court to much smaller local independent events. Sometimes these upstarts can be just as rewarding and a new crop of garden shows are making their mark on the gardening calendar. Check out some of these in 2015 …
Edible Garden Shows http://www.theediblegardenshow.co.uk/
This show started life at Caramelleigh, Warwickshire but has been held at Alexandra Palace for the past 2 years and it’s a great way to bring the countryside to Londoners. The Edible Garden Show and Good Life Live are scheduled together from 20th – 22nd March 2015. While The Edible Garden Shows concentrate on getting you growing, Good Life Lives takes you from plot to plate and beyond. Lots of celebrity gardeners on hand with advice and workshops.
Toby Buckland’s Garden Festivals http://www.tobygardenfest.co.uk/
Him off the telly runs two festivals under his own name in the West Country. Described as offering a more intimate experience than the big shows in the calendar, they offer plenty for everyone and lots of famous gardeners in attendance.
Powderham Castle, Kenton, near Exeter, Devon from Friday 1st May & Saturday 2nd May is the first of Toby Buckland’s festivals, happily back again this year.
The Bowood House festival is a new one this year set in the house’s beautiful grounds, designed by ‘Capability’ Brown and takes place at Bowood House, near Calne, Wiltshire from Friday 5th June & Saturday 6th June.
The Chelsea Fringe Garden Show http://www.chelseafringe.com/
This spin off from the big daddy of all garden shows has been running for 4 years and gets a fair bit of media attention (Robert Elms’ BBC London show will be involved again this year). The festival runs for a whopping 22 days – from May 16 to June 7. The festival is going from strength to strength. Last year it included more than 250 community gardening activities – from walks, food events, open days, exhibitions and art installations to performances and talks.
A Great Garden Show – Grow London http://growlondon.com/london/
A contemporary garden show. My walls will attest to the fact that I’ve long been a fan of Will Ramsay’s Affordable Art Fairs, so I had to mention his foray into garden shows. Grow London takes place 19-21 June on Hampstead Heath and has positioned itself as the chic garden show for Londoners. There are approximately 100 carefully curated exhibitors offing everything from contemporary gardening and outdoor living, cutting edge and classic garden furniture, hand-forged tools, chic pots and even garden sculpture, as well as rare plants from leading nurseries. Then, there’s the talks programme and activities for children.
Dig the City http://www.digthecity.co.uk/
This Manchester festival is now in its third year, celebrating the urban gardening enthusiast. It’s a range of market stalls, pop-up events and very popular show gardens. August dates to be announced shortly.
The Great Dorset Chili Festival http://www.greatdorsetchillifestival.co.uk/
Chili festivals are popping up from Brighton to Blackpool and everywhere in between. The Great Dorset Chili Festival has been going since 2011 and takes place at St Giles House, Wimborne St Giles, Dorset. You can speak to any of the stall holders about their passion and find out growing and cooking tips, before tracking down your favourite variety. Lots of food and lots of plants. Lovely!
Plenty to do and see, so when you’ve tired of lolling around on your beloved metal patio furniture, get out there and enjoy the variety of this emerging garden show scene.