National gardening show enlists public help to drive home green message
The first big national gardening show on the annual horticultural calendar is driving home the biodiversity message this year, in an attempt to encourage British gardeners to do their bit for the greater good of the planet.
For the first time ever, the Malvern Spring Gardening Show (12 -15 May 2011) is dedicating its entire theatre programme to the subject of conserving the natural environment, and will be showing green-fingered visitors how small changes in the way they garden, can make a significant impact on local, and ultimately global, diversity.
The new 'Garden in Harmony Theatre' boasts two walk-through gardens designed by 2010 Chris Beardshaw Mentoring Scholarship winner, Paul Hervey-Brookes. The 'In Flight Garden' is a pocket space of valuable wildlife habitats and native species, and the 'Companion Garden' is an area of pest-repellent, companion planting.
Television gardener and designer, James Alexander-Sinclair is the host for an exciting four-day programme of talks and demonstrations from a star-studded line-up of respected gardeners, wildlife enthusiasts and industry experts, speaking about subjects ranging from log hotels, compost cafes, natural predators, habitat creation and rain gardens.
Matthew Wilson (Landscape Man, Channel 4) and herb expert Jekka McVicar are heading up the discussion panel on Thursday May 12, and talking about rain gardens and integrated pest management respectively.
On Friday May 13, 'Biodiversity - What, Why and How?' is the subject of a talk by award-winning garden designer and television presenter, Chris Beardshaw, and on the same day, Kim Hurst of The Cottage Herbery, will demonstrate organic and natural planting.
Joe Swift (BBC Gardeners' World) takes to the stage on Saturday 14 to explain how even the smallest urban garden can work in harmony with the natural environment, without compromising on beauty and style, and Brigit Strawbridge and Tony Grey will be talking about wild bees, beekeeping and the importance of pollination and planting.
The RSPB will also be at the Show on Saturday with its Garden Bird Roadshow.
Mike Dilger ('Wild Gardens', 'Springwatch' and 'The ONE Show') makes his Malvern debut on Saturday and Sunday 14 and 15, with a look at garden wildlife and natural predators. He will also lead a new Showground nature trail for children and adults, which will take in foraging, pond dipping and habitats.
Said Sharon Gilbert, Press & PR Manager for the Showground: "The programme of global conservation agreed at the UN Convention on Biodiversity in Nagoya last year was a great breakthrough in the fight to protect our natural environment.
Gardening is one area where the general public can do its bit to preserve and create habitats, plant native species, compost waste, garden organically and dig ponds. It might be small scale, but it all contributes to the global effort, and events like ours must get behind the initiative, keep up the momentum and promote the message to as many people as possible.
We are very excited by the prospect of dedicating this year's theatre programme to such an important subject, and hope that Britain's gardeners will use some of the ideas they glean from the speakers to make a few small changes at home."
The Malvern Spring Gardening Show is a partnership between The Malvern Showground and the Royal Horticultural Society, and takes place on Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday 12 - 15 May.
Other new attractions include Landscaping Live, Country Living Pavilion, a Discovery Zone for younger gardeners and a vegetable planting project in association with CARE farms.
For tickets and information, please visit the web site: www.threecounties.co.uk/springgardening or telephone the Showground on 01684 584924.
Article posted on 12 Jan 2011.