I recently visited the RHS London Plant and Design Show at the Horticultural Halls in central London. The show includes stands from a wide variety of specialist nurseries, horticultural suppliers and artistic exhibitors. Here are a few of my highlights.
These fabulous steel sphere sculptures by moore designs can be used singularly or in groups to create stunning focal points in the garden. Available in stainless or rusted mild steel the latter is an ideal complement to fine textured grasses such as Stipa tenuissima to give a relaxed, natural feel.
These obelisk/sculptures by moore designs will add height to the border and provide support for flowering climbers such as Clematis.
I loved these gorgeous pots on display by ceramic artist Hanne Westergaard. Based in Yorkshire Hanne creates planters, birdbaths and water features to be used in the garden as well as interior pieces.
The organic shape of these small containers was wonderfully tactile.
In the plant hall there were plenty of wonderful specimens on display. This little Iris reticulata ‘Blue Note’ is a new introduction with deep blue flowers that have distinct dark edged falls and white markings. They are best grown in full sun and free draining soil, flowering in February to 15cm tall.
On the Hardy’s nursery stand two plants in particular caught my eye. This lovely Lathyrus vernus is a low growing bushy perennial that thrives in semi shade where the soil is humus rich and well drained. It has pretty pea-like purple blue flowerers from March to May that contrast the fresh green foliage. Perfect in a shady spring border with Ferns, Pulmonarias and Dicentra, it has a height and spread of 45cm x 45cm
Pulmonaria ‘Diana Clare’ is a wonderful semi evergreen spring flowering perennial. It has slightly larger than usual violet-blue flowers and medium textured silvery green foliage that will provide a striking contrast to other foliage and shine out in lower light levels. Height and spread 30cm x 40cm
Synthyris missurica var. stellata is an unusual little woodland perennial with spikes of bell-shaped violet-blue flowers in spring. The foliage is heart-shaped, rounded and slightly hairy. It is just 15cm tall and best planted in shade and humus-rich, well drained soil.
And of course no winter show is complete without Snowdrops. Here are just a couple of the lovely varieties that were on show.
Left to right: Galanthus ‘South Hayes’, Galanthus ‘Seagull’ and Galanthus plicatus ‘Diggory’ which was a particular favorite with me for those gorgeous shaped outer segments, resembling the silhouette of a victorian dress.