Jolly Good Shows; Get the Most from Chelsea, Hampton Court Palace and Other Fantastic Flower and Landscape Garden Shows with These Insider Tips

Coventry Evening Telegraph (England), May 27, 2017 | Go to article overview

Jolly Good Shows; Get the Most from Chelsea, Hampton Court Palace and Other Fantastic Flower and Landscape Garden Shows with These Insider Tips


Byline: YOUR GARDEN With David Domoney

FLOWER shows are the Oscars, Baftas and Ivor Novellos of the horticultural world. There are loads of them over the course of the gardening calendar and you don't have to be an expert to attend.

Chelsea, which started on Tuesday and ends today, is the most famous flower and landscape garden show in the UK - and possibly in the world.

If you've missed tickets for this year, don't fret - there are plenty of great shows throughout the summer that you can still book.

Some people find the big horticultural shows intimidating and, truth be told, they can be a little daunting to the beginner.

But British flower shows are a fantastic experience you don't want to miss. So here are a few tips to make any show an easy and really rewarding day out: ALWAYS RESEARCH THE SHOW BEFORE YOU GO PRINT off a map from the website so you can circle the areas you want to visit and plan your day.

It will stop you aimlessly fighting crowds or arguing where you want to go next with your partner. And it pays to go prepared. If you have any friends who have been before, ask their advice.

Each showground has its pros and cons, so research is always a priority - from where to park for easiest access to the best place to have a cuppa.

BRING ALONG PICTURES OF YOUR GARDEN OR SPECIFIC PLANTS YOU NEED ADVICE ON AND even bring along a leaf or twig if you want to identify a pest or blight.

You will be able to take advantage of the huge array of expert opinions. And don't be shy - you will find almost everyone is happy to help, whether amateur or professional.

If you are buying any plants or furniture, you will be able to work out whether they are suitable before lugging them home.

IT MIGHT SOUND OBVIOUS BUT MAKE SURE YOU ARE DRESSED PROPERLY STURDY shoes for a big show are a must for traipsing around a large site.

Clothing should reflect the forecast. A hat and brolly are always a good idea and many people bring shopping baskets on wheels for their purchases.

If the forecast is for showers, visit the outside exhibits while it is dry and save the marquees for later, when it starts to really chuck it down.

Avoid the queues by arriving early.

GET IN AS SOON AS THE SHOW OPENS YOU will get round a lot of the floral displays, marquees and show gardens before the crowds arrive.

Lunch early and you can keep one step ahead of the mob. And take bottled water with you - it will save you queuing for refreshments and keep you going so you can enjoy as much of the showground as possible. …

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