Gardeners will have their chance to create their own designer planting plots, as eight gardening personalities have teamed up with Ecover UK to design inspirational planters for this year’s RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show (9-14 July). The plots will be on display at the show, and the exclusive planting plans will be available to download from http://www.rhs.org.uk/Ecover-Planters
Award winning garden designers including Annie Guilfoyle, Adam Frost, Anne Marie-Powell, growers Pippa Greenwood and Jekka McVicar as well as garden designers and broadcasters James Alexander-Sinclair, Toby Buckland and Matthew Wilson have designed a range of beautiful 1m2 and 2m2 planting plans, which will be planted up and displayed within the Inspire zone, sponsored by Ecover, Following the show, these planters will be donated to a number of community-based projects.
Each planter has its own unique style, with many using plants to attract wildlife, which is a prominent theme throughout this year’s show;
Ann-Marie Powell “I’ve designed a planter highlighting the diversity of plants. All the plants are edible perennials. Birds, bees, insects and even humans can feast not only their eyes, but their tastebuds too. I like to think of it as a forage-fest for the show”.
Adam Frost “All the plants in my bee-friendly planter have been chosen for their nectar-rich properties. The cardoon provides structure with its architectural leaves, while Dahlia merckii is a single-flowered type, which is easier for bees to feed from. Nepeta ‘Blue Cloud’ and Geranium ‘Rozanne’ provide softness to the planting and is a deep violet-blue, a colour that bees and butterflies find irresistible”.
Annie Guilfoyle “My planter consists of dark foliage shrubs as they provide such a wonderful backdrop for other strong colours. The combination of blue and brown plants is a personal favourite of mine”.
Pippa Greenwood “I've been growing veg since I was young and am keen to promote Grow Your Own, even in the smallest garden. My planter is filled with great veg that you can grow in a fairly small space, not only does it taste great but it looks stunning too”.
Jekka McVicar “I have specifically designed my planter to attract birds, bees and butterflies. The flowers will appear from early summer through until early autumn; so providing nectar for many pollinating insects”.
Matthew Wilson “The inspiration for my planter is the grasslands around where I grew up, on the North Downs in Kent, but using garden plants to tell the story rather than wild species”.
Toby Buckland “My ‘Honey Pot' planter contains a blend of long-flowering herbaceous perennials that look good all summer and are loved by the bees. At the centre is a bespoke metal urn that doubles as a support for annual climbers”.
James Alexander-Sinclair “A planter can be subtle, sophisticated, blaring or productive but, whichever way you go it should always be joyful. My design, filled with grass and vibrant colours of pink, yellow and purple does precisely that”.
This year for the first time RHS Hampton Court Palace will be divided into three zones; Grow, Escape and Inspire featuring gardens, plants, food and shopping that reflect their individual themes. Keen gardeners will love Grow, where they will find nurseries, plants stalls, potting bench demonstrations, and stands selling the very best in gardening equipment. In Escape visitors will find the Country Living Magazine Pavilion, learn how to ‘grow their own’ fruit and veg, marvel at the show’s famous roses and floristry and sample the delights of the Artisan Food Producers in the Great Tastes Marquee. In keeping with the show’s reputation for breaking boundaries in contemporary garden design, the third zone, Inspire, sponsored by Ecover, focuses on innovation and making the most of outside space.
Within the Inspire zone is The Ecover Garden, by award-winning designer Matthew Childs, who won an RHS Gold medal for his Conceptual Garden at last year’s show. The Ecover Garden champions sustainability and highlights ways in which we can aid the recovery of our aquatic environments. Ecover has also commissioned artist Ptolemy Elrington to create a sculpture of a giant bee made from recycled metal and plastics. The sculpture made its debut at Glastonbury festival before becoming a focal point in the Inspire zone at RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show.
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