Plant Heritage National Collection Holders pick up 17 Gold Medals at RHS Chelsea 2015

Plant Heritage National Collection Holders picked up 17 Gold medals, 2 Silver-gilt and 1 Silver for their displays in the Great Pavilion at RHS Chelsea Flower Show this year. The months of hard work and planning were rewarded for a host of our National Plant Collection Holders who have worked round the clock to put on the most fantastic displays.

 Sarah Cook won a Gold award for her wonderful display of Irises bred by Sir Cedric Morris, being shown in the Grand Pavilion in partnership with Howard Nurseries. Acclaimed artist Sir Cedric Morris was a notable Iris breeder and plantsman whose Irises were last shown at Chelsea in the 1950s. The exhibit has a large planting of Morris Irises and vases of Iris in a studio area. The garden and studio areas are enhanced by backdrops painted by Cherryl Fountain who also worked on Gold Medal winning exhibits of Malmaison Carnations put up by Sarah’s husband Jim Marshall at the Hampton Court Flower Show.

Claire Austin of Hardy Plants, who holds National Plant Collections of Iris (Bearded) and Paeonia (hybrid herbaceous) won Gold for her display of Irises to add to her gold won in 2010. All the irises on show in Claire’s Modern Iris Garden have been trialled and grown on the slopes of Claire's hardy plant nursery in Powys, Wales.

After winning Best in Show at the Malvern Spring Festival just recently, Drointon Nurseries, who hold a National Plant Collection of Primula auricula (Border), have followed their success with a Gold award at Chelsea for their striking display with clever use of mirrors and lighting to show off these photogenic plants.

Dibleys Nurseries who hold National Plant Collections of Streptocarpus and Saintpaulia won another Gold award this year and also scooped up 2nd place in Plant of the Year for their new plant Streptocarpus ‘Polka-Dot Purple’.

Gold awards have also been presented to David Austin Roses (Rosa), Don Billington (Billbergia), Fibrex Nurseries (Pelargonium), Hewitt-Cooper Carniverous Plants (Drosera), Hillier Nurseries (14 National Collections), Peter Beales Roses (Rosa), Plantagogo (Heuchera, Heucherella, Tiarella), Tale Valley Nursery (Rhodohypoxis & xRhodoxis), The Botanic Nursery (Digitalis), Tynings Climbers (Passiflora, Jasminum, Mandevilla, Thunbergia), W&S Lockyer (Primula auricula), Westcountry Nurseries (Lupinus), Winchester Growers (Dahlia) and Paul Harris of Brookfield Plants (Hemerocallis & Hosta pending).

Silver-gilt awards went to Steve Hickman of Hoyland Plant Centre for his display of Agapanthus and Tulbaghia and Bowden Hostas who hold a National Plant Collection of Hosta (modern hybrids). First time exhibitors T3 Plants – Wall End Nursery, picked up a Silver award for their display of Abutilon.
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