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My 2017 brochure is now published and is available to download from here.

Outstanding day at new venue – Coverham Abbey

A huge thank you to all of you who came along to visit the first Coverham Abbey Plant Fair.  I hope you enjoyed your day out despite the slightly inclement July weather of one heavy rain shower, sunshine but cold gusty winds. Despite the wind, the plant specialists and accessory stands coped amazingly well with their lovely displays and a good day was had by all. We hope to be back there next year.  

“PLANT UP” – new event to be held at Lowther Castle this October

PLANT UP! BREAKING NEWS. A brand new event will be taking place at Lowther Castle, near Penrith, on Sunday 22 October. Not only will there be a celebration of gardening with quality plant nurseries attending but there will also be an attempt to break the Guinness Book of Records of planting over 28,000 camassia bulbs within the gardens at Lowther in one day. More information will follow as the fair takes shape but we shall be open from 11am – 4pm.  Admission will be FREE for the plant fair and anyone wishing to get involved and join the record breakers must contact Lowther Castle directly.  01931-712192. Lowther Castle, Penrith CA10 2HH Open 11am – 4pm, admission to the plant fair free.  Normal garden admissions apply.  Dogs on leads very welcome.  For people volunteering to join the PLANT UP, admission to the gardens will be free.

Source with Care

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 ...

Welcome to the 2017 Plant Fairs

We start the 2017 season at the wonderful spring gardens of Holme Pierrepont Hall in Nottingham.  Hidden in a secret oasis, just past the International Watersports Centre, Holme Pierrepont is a little gem of a place. The fair will be held on the lawns in front of the Hall and admission includes the fair, gardens and grounds.  Refreshments are served throughout the day.  We open 11am – 4pm. We shall be visiting a beautiful private garden in the Yorkshire Dales next year – Coverham Abbey, not too far from the Yorkshire racing village of Middleham.  Part of the garden has been created within the ruins of the Abbey and I know you’ll all fall in love with both the garden and the location. Old favourites include Newburgh Priory, Lytham Hall, Holker Hall and Sutton Park and next year we shall be visiting Ness Hall gardens (another private garden) in July so you’ll be able to be charmed yet again with this truly breathtaking garden. If you would like up to date information before anyone else, just complete my form and I’ll include you in any newsletters.  Your email addresses are never shared with anyone. If you are a member of a gardening group or club, I’d love to hear from you.  I also give talks about gardens and garden related talks.  Have talk, will travel!   Judy Popley

NESS HALL – Sunday 9 July 2017

    A garden of delights.  This is one of my very favourite gardens (the other being Wollerton Old Hall in Shropshire) and never fails to make me catch my breath. NESS HALL, hidden away in beautiful North Yorkshire countryside, continues to enthral and charm visitors and for those of you who haven’t visited this delightful garden yet … please come!  I promise you won’t be disappointed. The garden is rarely open to the public and Flower Power Fairs has been lucky enough to hold a fair with the Murray Wells for six years now. For 2017 we shall be showing the gardens in July …. and from what I remember of last year when I visited the family to sort out the dates, it was just a riot of colour and scent.  This garden never even fails to take my breath away … and just one gardener and Harriette, the owner.  Astonishing!  As I write this todayI have absolutely no idea what will be on show, but I can assure you, it will look stunning.  It is a lovely garden, awash with colour and a joy to photograph.  As always we have some wonderful plant stands to offer you.   Harriette has kindly suggested I put their drone film on my website so you can see what a fabulous garden it is.  So here it is https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rvvCr9EqZmA   There will be over 12 stands attending the fair, from the delightful Herb Nursery from Rutland to Northern Ark and The Quiet Corner Nursery from Northumberland and of course, lots of Yorkshire nurseries there too. We shall all sorts of plants on sale from climbers and exotics through to cottage garden plants, shade lovers and alpines.  And Jane from Brambling House Alpines will also have her specialist salvia corner (get there early, she always sells out). Luke from Alfresco will be bringing his ...

Useful websites for you

  There is a really good FB page called ALL HORTS run by three amazing people and they have recently launched a website giving us all the chance to find these amazing little gems – small, specialist plant nurseries!  The link is below so please have a look. If you know of any plant nurseries that you think might like to get involved – ITS ALL FREE – then tell them to go to this website! www.independentplantnurseriesguide.uk Many people want to support independent local nurseries but following various social media conversations and an unfortunate comment on Gardeners World, alluding to all nurseries and garden centres being shut on Easter Sunday it became obvious to 3 horticulturalists that often finding those nurseries was easier said than done. So the 3, Matthew Currie who has put the site together, Sacha Hubbard and Sara Venn began discussing a way to support the businesses and often friends whose nurseries they passionately believe in. Quickly nurserymen from across the country were getting in touch, and asking to be a part of the guide and gardeners young and old were suggesting their favourite local nurseries The guide is very much a work in progress and we hope by releasing it that more and more independent nurseries will come forward and be a part of this extraordinary project that is shining a light on our British horticultural experts and helping gardeners, both new and experienced, to access the wealth of knowledge carried in these nurseries. From Scotland to the Channel Islands there are many nurseries to chose from and so the guide offers not just your local information, but also helps arrange trips further afield. All the work has been done on the guide completely voluntarily and we hope that with this as the ethos behind the Independent Plant Nurseries Guide, that the ...

AUGUST BANK HOLIDAY SUNDAY 27 AUGUST 2017 AT HOLKER HALL, CUMBRIA

HOLKER HALL PLAYS HOST TO FLOWER POWER FAIRS on Bank Holiday, Sunday 27 August.  We shall be alongside the very popular Farmers’ Market at the top of the car park, beside the Shop and toilets. As usual, there will be a magnificent selection of quality plants on sale from the highly respected plant nurseries who attend the fairs and they will be offering you huge choice of plants ready for your gardens.  From herbaceous to shade lovers, shrubs and trees to alpines and succulents, there will be something for all, to suit all gardens and all pockets. We OPEN EARLIER THAN NORMAL – 10am and admission to the plant fair and Farmer’s Market is free.  If you wish to visit the wonderful gardens there, the normal  admissions apply. Bank Holiday Sunday 27 August   10am – 4pm FREE ADMISSION.  Suitable for dogs (but not allowed in the gardens). HOLKER HALL, CARK IN CARTMEL, CUMBRIA LA11 7PL and ON BANK HOLIDAY MONDAY WE SHALL BE AT NEWBURGH PRIORY NEAR THIRSK.  Click on Newburgh Priory to find out more.  Open 11am – 3pm.  Admission £3.00, children free, dogs most welcome.  Stunning line up of quality plant nurseries attending.

WYNYARD HALL Walled Garden – Sunday 16 July 2017

This amazing hotel was once the home of the Vane Tempest Stuarts, the Marquis of Londonderry, whose vast family estates stretched for acres in the North East all the way to Seaham and Seaham Harbour (created to facilitate the removal of coal from their mines down to Newcastle), to Londonderry House in London and the most amazing gardens of Mount Stewart in Northern Ireland. (see below). Now this magnificent estate is owned by Sir John Hall, ironically the son of a coal miner, who has effectively saved this amazing building, restoring and renovating with such care and dedication and now making it into one of the top hotels in the country.  He embarked on an ambitious plan a few years ago to restore the Walled Gardens – allegedly spending over £2 million – and I’ve had my eye on this estate for at least 8 years!  SO HERE WE ARE!         The plant fair will be held within the magnificently restored and replanted Walled Garden alongside the Visitor Centre.  I can’t tell you how excited I am to be bringing Flower Power here.  I hope you will be as excited as me.     Wynyard Hall Hotel, Stockton-on-Tees, Tees Valley TS22 5NF Sunday 16 July 2017 11.00am – 4.00pm

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