If you’d have told me 20 years ago - when the only way my Mum could convince me to go to a garden centre was at the promise of a peek around the tropical fish section with potential purchase to follow - that today I would be the one booking us tickets and planning days out to any garden or flower festival going, I most certainly would have laughed my frilly socks off at the idea of it.
The Katie Alice Summerhouse was to make its second public appearance this year at The RHS Hampton Court Flower show after it’s debut at Chelsea in May – as if I needed any other excuses to visit. So last week my mother and I drove down on the day following the hottest of the year, sunglasses and ice-cream money at the ready, for a day filled with Pimm’s and perennials.
No prizes for guessing which one out of my Mother and I has just spent two weeks in the South of France.
We arrived at the show (rather dangerously) at the area filled with nurseries and garden centres all showing off in lovely displays what top quality flora they were selling at the show. Within about 20 minutes of being there I’d already pledged my ice-cream money to about 4 new planting schemes that the price of a fab lolly wasn’t likely to cover. I can say however that the cost of plants at Hampton is surprising excellent value, especially given the location of an actual palace in West London!
We visited the Scott’s of Thrapston stand to view the lovely Katie Alice summerhouse (you can read more about it here), and spent the rest of the afternoon vigorously testing the comfort of new garden furniture for my Mum’s garden and swooning helplessly over exceptional garden designs, each seasoned perfectly with a top notch display of foliage.
And how to round off the day - sat on a deck chairs licking a 99 with a flake and listening to The Gatsby Jazz band. That followed by an intense shopping mission to all the nurseries we had noted earlier and a game of plant Tetris as we desperately tried to squeeze an array of dahlias, bay trees, and penstemons into every nook of the car.
Horary to the British summertime and to English gardens!
The next RHS show in the diary for me is Tatton Park Flower Show, where Me and Matt will be holding a stall in the Country Living marquee, so you can pop by and buy a mug! We will be doing a couple of special show offers as well as running a competition there so keep up to date on our facebook event if you're planning on visiting the show!