Industry Chelsea garden hits plant introduction record

The Sun Flower Square, the industry garden led by Peter Seabrook is set to display the largest amount of novelties on an exhibit at Chelsea, or any other UK show.

The cross-industry floral exhibit in the Grand Pavilion features, at time of writing, has some 40 new plant introductions spread over the four gardens that make up the Square. More than 80 companies are contributing to the display.

Wyevale Nurseries will be launching a collection of new blooms on the Room Outside Garden.  The Candy Collection, Dahlia ‘Lemon Sherbet’, Dahlia ‘Rhubarb & Custard’, Dahlia ‘Strawberry Bon Bon’ will  be on show along with Dahlia ‘White Cockatoo’ al ruffled ivory white flower among dark, almost black foliage.  Wyevale will also be focussing on new varieties of Salvia with Salvia ‘Little Kiss’, Salvia ‘Love and Wishes’ and Salvia ‘Radio Red’ at the show. Lupin ‘Purple Emperor’ will also be introduced to the visitors, as well as the new Ligustrum ‘Sunshine, a low-growing hedge that doesn’t bloom "which is good news for allergy sufferers".

A highlight of The Sun Flower Square will be Chrysanthemum ‘Princess Charlotte’. Named after the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s daughter, the chrysanthemum is a pale baby pink with vibrant green tips. It will support the children’s hospice charity which has Her Royal Highness the Duchess of Cambridge as its Royal Patron. 

Other charities exhibiting on the gardens include Sweet Pea ‘ Eleanore Udall’ which is being grown exclusively for horticultural therapy charity Thrive will be on show, as is the Time to Live Rose from Nursery Fresh which is raising money for Breast Cancer Now.

The garden will see a brand new pink and white bi-colour Asiatic lily variety ‘Perfect Joy’, bred at Pinetops Nursery and commercially available this year for the first time.

New varieties of Petunias will adorn the Seed and Hanging Basket Gardens, amongst them will be Petunia ‘Night Sky’ from Ball Colegrave, Petunia ‘Tidal Wave Red Velour’ and Petunia ‘Tumbelina Anna’ from Fleuroselect.

Fleuroselect will also have Calamintha nepeta ‘Marvelette Blue’ and Cosmos bipinnatus ‘Xanthos’on show as part as the 2016 Medal Winners series.

Begonias will also be abundant across the floral exhibit.  Benary will be showing off Begonia BIG Mix in five different colour shades, Marshalls will also be displaying new begonias in the shape of Begonia ‘Sweet Spice Citrus’ and Begonia ‘Sweet Spice English Rose’, the first fragrant varieties with a compact free-branching spreading habit.

Another seed company, Thompson and Morgan will be growing new varieties especially for Chelsea. Bidens ‘Bee Dance’,  Buddleja ‘Buzz’, Digitalis "Illumination Ruby Slippers", Geranium ‘Chocolate’, Geranium Caramel, Marigold ‘Strawberry Blonde’ will be on show on the Seed Garden.  Mr Fothergill’s will be growing Calendula x hybrida ‘PowerDaisy Sunny.  Suttons are exhibiting a grow your own theme by displaying Mangetout 'Golden Sweet' and Mangetout 'Shiraz' The Seed Garden will be completed by Unwins who will be growing Raspberry ‘Ruby Beauty’, Runner Bean 'Firestorm' and Tomato ‘Montello’.

Seiont Nurseries will be providing foliage with Tiarella ‘Emerald Ellie’, Heuchera Fox Series Silver Celebration and Hebe ‘Celebration’.  Sakata, in conjunction with Earley Ornamentals will contrast this with the stunning blooms of SunPatiens ‘Vigorous Clear White’ and SunPatiens ‘Vigorous Scarlet Red’.

Ball Colegrave complete the new plant line up with Osteospermum ‘Serenity Blue Eye’, a unique and exceptional flower colour, buttery yellow flowers fade to a central blue eye.

This industry first display features four model garden displays, each 4m x 4m square, the same size as the average front garden in Britain and based on the successful gardening campaign ‘Love the Plot You’ve Got’.

The gardens are ‘Room Outside’, designed by Lovania and made up of HTA members, the GCA Jubilee Hanging Basket Garden, The Seed Garden and the Rising Stars Garden, supported by Westland Horticulture.

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