‘Shall I go or not’ is often on the mind of folk when the garden show season comes around each year. BBC Gardeners’ World Live as an example is not far away now, and not for the first time I find myself once again asking why people find them so interesting, and why are they drawn in their thousands to visit?
Horticultural ‘Retail’ Therapy?
Specialist nurseries travel the length and breadth of the country to exhibit their wares and display the results of lengthy breeding programmes. Dedicated fashion followers are drawn to see new plant offerings and bag their favourites, whilst asking questions of the people who really do know their plants.
It’s worth saying that if you’ve been bitten by the gardening bug and want to take your plant collection to the next level, then it’s so useful having nurseries brought together in one place – this alone can save you miles of expense trying to visit them. (Although a visit is worthwhile too!)
Show gardens are always a draw, and they always contain useful ideas to take away, especially plant combinations to study and inspire. There’s always opportunity to drop into the role of a flower show judge of course, and I like to judge on sustainability and practicality with some of the gardens. There’s always room for innovation though, as garden design and construction needs to evolve and move with available resources.
It’s incredible to think of the effort that goes into a show garden, yet whilst it is garden theatre, there are often designers, landscapers and gardeners who, as professional crafts people, work tirelessly to bring their vision to life; often they produce gardens with a serious cause that needs attention.
Prize Winning Exhibits?
Floral marquees always offer an intense blast of horticulture that will hit your senses hard! Row after row of carefully prepared displays from a range of nurseries and specialist groups who really know their plants. There will I guarantee be something that will capture your attention – and it will be oh so instagram-able!
Exuberant and delicately prepared floral art will inspire; benches laden with bonsai clipped to perfection over decades will fill you with admiration; tiered staging of plant groups will dazzle you with their close-up beauty; and blemish free vegetables will puzzle you with their scale and range of other worldly forms.
Most garden shows feature a celebrity or several. Unlike many subject areas, tv garden folk do attend shows and are very reachable so to speak, but please don’t touch as security are never far away!
Many of us wonder, don’t we, whether random tv folk are chosen, created or trained to simply follow a script. However, to see these people stand before a discerning gardening crowd, carrying out live demonstrations and answering questions is something to celebrate. Remember; it’s about as far away from gardening in your comfort zone as you can get, so all credit to those folk for getting up there and facing the public!
To Draw a Conclusion…
OK, so there’s lots to see, eat, enjoy and buy, but isn’t it all just too much effort and expense, and why are garden shows shows so popular?
All things considered, including much I haven’t had room to list here, I would say that garden shows remain deservedly popular, despite their busyness, for they give opportunity to mingle with garden minded folk.
They offer a chance to relax, shop, eat and be merry in the presence of many other people who, for one reason or another, love gardening, just like you. I would therefore have to say NO – it certainly isn’t too much effort!
This is an independent blog post, not sponsored – I just love a good garden show! Maybe I’ll be seeing you at BBC Gardeners’ World Live this year?
Go on, give it a go, you might like it!