As another year draws to a close, we reflect on a great 2015!
We here at How Green can’t believe how quickly 2015 has flown by!! It only seems like yesterday since we were penning these pages in a similar vain. What a year!!
Our season started very early back in early February. After a wet early part of Winter, the weather started to behave and our landscape customers could work on projects without getting swamped! A cold easterly wind seemed to stay with us for weeks and weeks, but importantly it stayed dry. Garden centre’s were buoyant with gardeners keen to get planting after the long, dark months!
We were once again involved with growing for the Chelsea Flower Show and grew the hardy annuals for Jo Thompson’s ‘The Retreat Garden’. The result, a silver-gilt medal, although the general opinion is, she should have won gold! Never mind Jo, there’s always next year!
Our series of public open weekends once again proved very successful! Great to see our regular followers as well as plenty of new faces. (Our 2016 dates will be posted soon). We also hosted talks and tours here at the nursery. We welcome garden societies & clubs who can also have exclusive access to the nursery and are able to go shopping! Amongst our guests this year were the PGG (Professional Gardeners Guild) and the SGD (Society of Garden Designers).
We continued busy throughout the whole year, again helping out with a garden at Hampton Court (The Yardly sponsored ‘A Growing Obsession) and our garden design/landscape followers have been flat out even up until Christmas!
We remain confident going into 2016 with some projects already pencilled in for January. As we go to press, we can announce we are opening for the first time for the NGS and are also involved with two gardens & a trade stand at Chelsea Flower Show! We wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a fab New Year!
******Our 2015 Christmas quiz is available to tackle from our availability download on this site. 100 green-fingered questions to test the grey matter this festive season! Get your answers back to us before January 10th – prizes for the best efforts! Helen Yemm, the gardening writer for the Daily Telegraph was our joint winner last year – no pressure!!*******
Very busy month ahead!
It’s difficult to believe it’s September already and the onset of Autumn is well under way! After a very dry year here in the south east, we’ve already experienced one of the wettest Augusts on record! Always a silver lining here at How Green, we have welcomed the rain, as Autumn signifies one of the best times for planting!
With this in mind, we have a lot going on this month. Firstly, we have a trade open day Friday 4th September. Strictly garden centres and garden designers/landscapers are warmly welcome to check out our new stock for the Autumn and into 2016. Special 10% off rate for orders taken on the day and network with tea & cake in our summer house!
Saturday 5th & Sunday 6th we open our doors to the public for our third and final weekend of the year. Take this opportunity to visit a trade nursery, with thousands of perennials, grasses, alpines, topiary and (NEW!!) a selection of shrubs! Great prices and knowledgable staff on hand to help with plant questions and advice. Take in tea & home-made cake in our summer house.
Friday 11th, Saturday 12th & Sunday 13th we head out on the road and are attending two events. Come and see us at the Penshurst Craft Fair, held in the grounds of Penshurst Place. We have a plant stand & show garden with a selection of late season interest alongside our friends Chilstone of Langton Green. The same weekend we also find ourselves exhibiting at Hever Castle and their newly launched Handmade and Homegrown Festival. A selection of local crafts, food and quilting, all held in the magnificent grounds of Hever Castle.
How Green grow plants for medal winning gardens again!
Another year, another grey hair! After growing for ‘A Potters Garden’ at Chelsea last, we thought we’d take on the stress and sleepless nights yet again! For us as humble growers, there is a lot of pressure to grow the plants and get them looking spot on for judging day!
This time, the ever so lovely Jo Thompson approached us for growing for the M&G sponsored ‘The Retreat’ garden. She chose us along with other friend and local grower Roger Platts. We were given the task of growing the hardy annuals for her traditional British planted garden.
Seeds were sown back in the Autumn of 2014 to give the plants the best possible start. We did a back up sowing soon after in case we suffered any losses along the way. We carefully nurtured the seedlings and gradually potted them into bigger pots as they became bigger.
Given light and heat, they soon raced away! In April they were moved into a well ventilated tunnel and remained there until two weeks before the big day! We (and Jo!) were very pleased with our efforts, as we had not grown many of the plants before! Plants included Ridolfia segetum, Daucus carota Dara, Gypsophila Covent Garden and Emilia javanica (this plant actually found it’s way onto Prince Harry’s garden Sentebale!).
The garden looked fabulous and Jo won a well deserved Silver-Gilt medal, although many believed it should have won gold! We also supplied a few plants for a gold medal winning artisan garden called a Trug makers Garden.
Wishing all our customers old and new a very prosperous season ahead!
My goodness how time flies, it only seems like five minutes ago when we were tucking into turkey and mince pies! It’s the end of January and our stock is coming along nicely. Our range of Spring bulbs are already available to purchase (see availability opposite) and our perennials, alpines & herbs are only a matter of weeks away from being marketable.
Lot’s of exciting things happening here at the nursery over the next twelve months. Our special trade and public open weekends make a welcome return. The dates will appear on this site soon, so keep your eyes peeled for that!
Nursery tours and talks with gardening clubs and societies are proving popular, with many dates already booked in here at the nursery. Please enquire if you would like an exclusive talk/tour of a strictly trade only grower!
Plans are in store for a web-shop towards the end of the year. To start with, it will be a site exclusively to buy brand new plant introductions. Keep up with the Jones’s with the years ‘must have’ plants!
Hot off the press, we are growing for Chelsea 2015. Last year we had the daunting task of exclusively growing for ‘Potters Garden’, the gold medal winning garden created by Nature Redesigned. Having said we’d take a break from it this year, we were approached by Jo Thompson, so how could we say no!!
Jo returns to Chelsea with her sixth garden in seven years. This year she is creating a ‘Sylvan Retreat’, sponsored by M & G Investments along main avenue. A quintessentially British garden, featuring a natural swimming pool and oak garden building. We are proud to be growing for her, along with Roger Platts for a very Kentish backed project!
Our annual Christmas quiz was very warmly received, with many budding horticulturists having a go! We are pleased to announce the winners! Ashley & Sam Louis who work in the gardens at Crowhurst Place came out top with an outstanding 99/100!! A tremendous effort! Second was Helen Yemm, gardening correspondent from the Daily Telegraph with a stonking 95/100 – both win £20.00 vouchers to spend at our public open weekends.
A Very Merry Christmas and a Happy & Prosperous New Year from us all at How Green!
It doesn’t seem like five minutes ago, we were penning these pages for Christmas and looking back at 2013 – how time flies!
Here at the nursery, with Christmas just over a week away, the excitement has started to build for the festive season! The staff tea hut has been lavishly decorated with highly flammable tinsel and an appalling fake tree, making for a winter wonderland! Waist lines are already expanding and all roads lead to the staff Christmas party in a few days time!
Staff are like Santa’s little helpers, busily creating Christmas wicker planters and lovely decorated Hyacinths which make wonderful Christmas presents. It’s still not too late to place your orders with us. ****We also have a special treat for you! Open our availability lists opposite and you’ll find the How Green Nursery Christmas quiz! 100 green fingered questions to get sunk into over the festive period. Put your brain cells to the test and send us back your answers via email. There will be prizes in the form of vouchers to our public open weekends next year for those with the most correct answers!****
We’ve had a great season here at How Green, with trade brisk throughout the year. The Winter of 2013 was the wettest on record, but the weather broke in February and we didn’t look back! A decent Spring for the first time in many years was then followed by a good Summer. Garden centres were busy and with an upturn in the economy the garden designers/landscapers followed.
There was never a dull moment with our trade and public open days, with many old friends and new customers paying us a visit. The tea and cake flowed and our stocks took a good battering!
We put together two show gardens of our own, as well as growing for prestige show gardens at Chelsea, Hampton Court, Malvern and Blenheim. Our crowning glory was Chelsea where we grew 90% of the plants for the Dial A Flight sponsored Potters Garden designed and put together by Nature Redesigned. The reward for their hard work was a well deserved gold medal – not bad for their first attempt at Chelsea!
We had a busy year on the social calendar, with many talks to garden societies held at venues as well as here at the nursery.
We look forward to 2015 and have some plans that will become apparent on these pages in the weeks to come, so keep tuned! All we have to say is Merry Christmas and a Happy and Prosperous New Year to you all and thank you for supporting us this season!