Friday, July 20, 2012

Not Another Plant Fair!!

Oh no, another plant fair?? Oh yes!!

I did mention on my previous post that last weekend was a free weekend but the Chenies Manor Plant Fair last Sunday was etched on our diary anyway. It is a big fair but the best bit about it for us is that it is within our area and only half an hour drive away. Quite convenient!

So we agreed that if it's nice and sunny we'll stay put and not go but if it's rainy again then we'll pop round for a quick visit. Well, it turned out to be a sunny day anyway and we still went! It is a pleasant fair (we went last year) and thought it would be nice to start the day by visiting and checking out whatever goodies the nurseries have bought with them.

Queue! Ten minutes early...
but twenty minutes to get in!
So off we went, nice and early at the very start of the fair. And of course everyone was thinking the same as there were long queues forming already, and to think we were ten minutes early! I suppose all regular plant fair attendees have the same mental wavelength with regards to arriving early (especially if you're after rarer plants).

For a one day fair it is rather large and the nearly all of the nurseries we saw this year were in the exact same spot as they were last year, de ja vu! But at least it made navigation quicker and we went straight to the stands of the nurseries we are likely to buy plants from like Edulis Nursery and Roseland House Nursery (which specialises on Clematis and other climbers).

Kniphofia rufa
Veratrum album - First time I've ever seen some being sold whilst in flower!
I quite like those wooden flowers! Maybe next time
After that special climber? Then this nursery is for you - Roseland House
Love the foliage of this one - Salvia argentea
Fatsia japonica 'Spider's Web' - looks like tissue culture has been very successful!
But saying that we didn't buy any climbers this time and came home with just four select plants. Plant buying for us wanes as the season progresses but possibly peaks again if there are good sales around in the autumn (and then almost none in the winter).

We stayed at the fair for an hour and a half before heading home, back by noon and spent the rest of the day gardening. The highlight of our visit though was this large wooden spider, we had to have this beast the moment we saw it.

This beauty (or should I say beast) came home with us
Now, I wonder if there will be any more fairs we'll go to before the end of the summer?? Maybe...

Mark :-)


  1. How wonderful. That Scabiosa is fantastic. Really cool looking foliage. Love where all your plant fairs are, makes it so great to be able to visit them.
    Cher Sunray Gardens

  2. I don't think I've ever heard of a plant fair in California. I'm so envious about all the opportunities available to you! Love the spider, too. Is it wood?

  3. Hi Cher, that Scabiosa is lovely isnt it!

    Gerhard, do remember that Britain is known as a nation of Gardeners! There are so many plant fairs. With lots of small ones held every weekend all over the country. As we are only 20 miles north of London we are fortunate in having very good transport links and also a lot of fairs within an easy commute.

  4. I'd have brought home the kniphofia. I do have arachnophobia so I hope you don't mind if I keep my opinion of your new baby to myself. :-D

  5. I like the spider, but the sun looks even better. I like the idea of Britain being a nation of gardeners, Napoleon said something quite different about us, no I wasn't there to hear his actual speech!

  6. Scabiosa atropurpurea 'Chile Black'???

    Could that be Salvia argentea? The Scabiosa has small green leaves.

    The house looks like Chenies Manor, is that where you were?


  7. Hi Bom, I wish I bought that Kniphofia as well, maybe next time! Bringing home a big spider is not for the faint hearted I suppose :)

    Alistair, it's nice to see some sun indeed, just for a change :) Today felt very summery, finally after a long wait it seems summer has finally arrived!!

    Chad, you're absolutely right! I'm not familiar with scabiosas and all the plants were labelled as such, tsk! The fair was indeed at Chenies Manor, nice grounds and setting but didn't go to the garden this year.

  8. Your garden is a veritable Tardis. I know I've said it before but you're always (always) buying new plants. When will it be full!?! Glad you had some sun in the queue. Dave

  9. I'm sooooooooo envious of all that green...all that lush growth...I'm longing for spring!!

  10. I'm with Dave where do all the plants go - I think youhave a secret plant stall somewhere else.

    I'm afraid I really dont like the spider would creep me out

  11. Don't mind me. I'm sorry to admit I'm a wuss when it comes to spiders. If my wife and children had any say in the matter, we'd probably have a similar "pet" latched on somewhere outside.

  12. Looks like my kind of place except for that QUEUE(LINE) of people! Glad you were able to get 4 plants!

    Re the Tropical book I reviewed...yes, buy it immediately! Since you are tropical gardeners, I was hoping you would stop by and see my post. When you get the book, prepare to be amazed by the garden photos inside. I've worn out the binding on mine and the book is now taped together. I've read it cover to cover as well. The author, Made Wijaya was also featured on a garden programme that can be seen on Youtube. The series is my favorite and I need to post links for other gardeners soon since it is a bit hard to find.
    Here's a direct link for a sneak peek. If the link doesn't work, just type in " The tropical paradise of Made Wijaya". Enjoy!

  13. Hi David, it's almost full but there's always space somewhere :)

    Mrs. Bok, spring will be on your way soon, but let us enjoy summer first :)

    Helen, no secret plant stall I'm afraid, just careful placing here and there :)

    Bom, part of the appeal of the spider is it does look creepy. Great for a jungle garden!

    Thanks David! I'm eagerly awaiting the arrival of the book!

  14. Wow, there's a lot to buy in there, and i also see many tropicals, even bananas or heliconia perhaps or canna. I love that Salvia too very unusual for a salvia.

  15. Hi Andrea, yes so many tropical plants! Many are used in fairly traditional displays in the UK, cannas for example have been with us for a long time. There does seem to be lots of unusual, rare and interesting plants available at these plant fairs. We were quite well behaved and didn't buy very much on this trip


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