How to get the most from BBC Gardeners’ World Live Special Edition.
Everyone’s favourite gardening show, BBC Gardeners’ World Live, returns to the NEC Birmingham for a new special edition from Thursday 26th–Sunday 29th August. With four fabulous days packed with top tips from some of the nation’s favourite green-fingered experts, stunning Show Gardens and a vast Floral Marquee, there is something for all garden-lovers.
To celebrate the return of one of the UK’s biggest gardening events, here are six things to enjoy at the Show this year:
1. Learn from BBC Two’s Gardeners’ World experts
Visit the drop-in My Gardeners’ World Stage to hear much-loved experts including Adam Frost (Thursday), Monty Don (Friday and Saturday) and Carol Klein (Sunday), plus Toby Buckland (Thursday and Friday) share their gardening inspiration, stories, tips and advice, as well as how we can be more aware of the impact that our gardens can have on wildlife and plants.
Live on stage with talks and demos, the green-fingered royalty will be on hand to give guests a helping hand with their gardening problems. Expect to hear all about the hottest trends and get the most topical advice, topped off with seasonal ideas for getting the most out of your garden.
2. Explore stunning Show Gardens
Bursting with colour and the sumptuous smell of summer, discover a wide range of Show Gardens at this year’s show.
In the What Lies Beneath Show Garden, visitors will experience a beautifully presented garden, by award-winning garden designer Professor David Stevens from a concept created by The Association of Professional Landscapers (APL). The walk-through includes a variety of design features including a raised glass-fronted pool, a green living wall, a stunning steel walkway, and a paved driveway. But, demystifying the details of what lies beneath, the foundations and underlying structures that underpin the finished garden will be on view, in an eye-level cross-section.
Designer Hana Leonard’s On Your Bike garden, created with Armstrong Landscapes Ltd, is inspired by cycling. The striking artistic vision will bring recycling, upcycling and cycling all together in one place in the form of a beautiful garden.
Those competing for the APL Avenue Best Show Garden award have centred their designs around the theme A Very British Affair, taking inspiration from quintessentially British themes. The gardens show how design and planting can transform a standard urban plot into a British haven.
Visitors will also be able to explore a host of more Show Gardens and Beautiful Borders, covering a spectrum of styles, with stunning planting combinations, savvy ideas and use of space, packed with ideas to recreate at home.
3. Discover a world of new plants
Nurseries from across the UK will put on a dazzling display of colour and scent in the Floral Marquee, designed this year with extra space between exhibits to browse and shop in comfort. Carnivorous plant nursery Shropshire Sarracenias will be exhibiting at the show for the first time, with a selection of these fascinating plants.
The Floral Marquee will feature a number of vintage motors from the Birmingham’s Black Country Living Museum – look out for the AJS H-Series Motor-Cycle and Sidecar Combination, built 1927, Ford Model-T Van, built 1921 and AJS, Nine Tourer, built 1931 – each nestled into a different spectacular floral display. Continuing the theme, Hardy’s Cottage Garden Plants’ display will feature an impeccably restored 1952 Massey Ferguson tractor from Rob Hardy’s Derbyshire family farm, in a celebration of his father’s many-time title of Bailsford Ploughing Champion.
The outdoor Plant Village presents further high-quality nurseries for visitors to browse and buy from.
4. Get one-to-one advice from green-fingered experts
Make the most of the expert guidance available at this year’s show with more one-to-one experiences available than ever. No matter your gardening interests, there’s sure to be an expert on hand at this year’s special edition event.
In the Floral Marquee you can delve deep into all things plants by speaking to The Plant Experts, including The Laughing Gardener Darren Rudge. While you’re there, catch up with the experts of Woodland Trust’s Tree Surgery to discover more about growing trees in even the smallest of spaces and the benefits that trees can have on wildlife.
For those looking to grow more of their own produce, the National Allotment Society will be on hand to share their expert tips alongside the Allotment Garden throughout the event. Whether you’re a grow-your-own novice or a pro looking for some fine-tuning tips, the team are bursting with advice that could save you money and improve your produce-growing skills.
Could your garden benefit from a touch of design? Visitors can receive expert insights into design and landscaping from both the Association of Professional Landscapers and Marshalls from their respective stands within the show – providing a rare opportunity to receive one-to-one expert advice from leading landscapers and designers.
Not sure how you can incorporate more greenery into your home? Head to the House of Plants for top styling tips from designer Samantha Theakstone and learn how you can grow your own house plants from @UKHousePlants’ Joe Bagley.
What’s more, learn how to look after your lawns with the experts from Rolawn. From how often you should water your lawn to how to resuscitate it, pick the brains of the lawn experts one-to-one at this year’s show.
5. Learn how to get creative with house plants
Bring any space to life by simply transforming your home into a floral delight – the show’s brand-new House of Plants feature, designed by Samantha Theakstone and located in the centre of the Floral Marquee, will celebrate the joy of houseplants and how they can bring style to any space. Learn more about how to style plants in the home and discover the indoor dos and don’ts from green-fingered experts.
6. Go from plot to plate with the best of the BBC Good Food Show
With the event this year focused on the outdoor areas, there will not be a BBC Good Food Summer show this year. However, a handpicked selection of artisan food and drink producers from the BBC Good Food Show will be bringing the flavour of summer to an outdoor BBC Good Food Market.
From tempting tarts and cracking cookies, to sizzling spices and specialist tea blends, there’s something delicious for every palate.
For more information and to book tickets to this year’s BBC Gardeners’ World Live Special Edition, visit bbcgardenersworldlive.com.