The beautiful private home of the Reynolds family will be playing host to our Lancashire venue in 2020. We shall be visiting the gardens on Sunday 10 May and as always, there will be an exciting mix of plant growers and specialists, garden accessory stands and hopefully some bee keepers and charity stands too. A delightful Walled Garden, a new and continually evolving woodland walk and a passionate family who want to bring more wildlife into their gardens and parkland. Leighton Hall is near to Carnforth, the town made famous for its magical railway station in “Brief Encounter”, and overlooks Morecambe Bay. Its a wonderful venue and I’m really excited about bringing a plant fair here. There will be lots of home made refreshments, gardens and grounds to explore and even a Birds of Prey display in the afternoon. Make a note in your diaries now – SUNDAY 10 MAY. 11am-4pm. http://www.leightonhall.co.uk
JUST A LITTLE TASTER for 2020! We shall start the season with our visit to Holme Pierrepont Hall, Nottingham on Sunday 22 March. We open from 11am – 4pm. Parking free. Dogs welcome. Admission £4.00, with children under 14 free.
It won’t be long before I release the dates and venues for 2020 but I’d just like to tell you that we shall be back at the charming Worsall Hall near Yarm for our “bi-annual” visit there. The fair will be taking place in June next year so you will see the gardens slightly earlier than usual. We shall also be returning to Constable Burton Hall in Wensleydale next year after a very successful plant fair there this July and I have a brand new garden to show you (and great plant fair) at a private estate not too far away from Scarborough. Two plant fairs at Newburgh Priory, with two at Sandon Hall in Staffordshire and I’m just finalising dates for Holker Hall next year. We’ve moved Ness Hall Plant Fair to the end of May as the first Spring Bank Holiday is a little confusing this year with VE Day, Friday 8 May, and replacing the Monday Bank Holiday date. So lots of work goes on behind the scenes before Flower Power Fairs opens for 2020 at the delightful Holme Pierrepont Hall in Nottingham. Full dates and venues will be released towards the end of September. And for those of you who have been to the fairs in 2019, thank you for your support and see you next year.
One of my plant specialists, The Quiet Corner, sent me a disturbing article about the use of Neonics in the horticultural industry. I have never heard of the word. I imagine many of you haven’t either but I personally find it worrying that these pesticides are used on our plants on a daily basis. This article appeared in the The Organic Way in the Spring/Summer issue 2017 and was written by Judith Conroy. I quote from this article: “I am often asked, “what plants can I grow that are good for bees?” There usually follows a lovely conversation about the fascinating relationships between different insects and their favourite blooms. My questioner will often end with “great, I’ll go and find some of those down at the garden centre.” My heart sinks, as having enthused them, I have to explain why this might not be a good idea …. The fact is that many of the plants for sale in garden centres, supermarkets, farm shops and plant nurseries are treated with a whole range of different chemicals to kill insects, molluscs, fungi and weeds (basically termed pesticides) – but there is no requirement to let the unsuspecting customer know this. For those of us buying plants with bees and other pollinating insects in mind, NEONICOTINOID insecticides (commonly known as Neonics) give particular cause for concern; though their use in agriculture receives prominent media coverage, their continued use in horticulture is seldom discussed. Neonics are used as a drench, meaning that the chemical is taken up by the plant and so is present in all its tissues, including, crucially, the pollen and nectar. Neonics act as neurotoxins, killing insect pests, such as vine weevils and aphids when they eat the plant, but are also proven to be highly toxic to non-target species such as bees who visit them ...