Alice in Wonderland is celebrated at the four RHS Gardens this August

Friday 31 July 2015

This summer the four RHS Gardens are celebrating the 150th anniversary of Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. For the whole of August, the gardens will bring to life all that is most lovable about this classic children’s book, offering a weird and wonderful assortment of Mad Hatter’s Tea Parties, Alice in Wonderland sculptures, family activities and quirky themed garden displays, all sponsored by Witan Investment Trust.


Children enjoying Alice in Wonderland activities at RHS Garden Harlow Carr

This summer the four RHS Gardens are celebrating the 150th anniversary of Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. For the whole of August, the gardens will bring to life all that is most lovable about this classic children’s book, offering a weird and wonderful assortment of Mad Hatter’s Tea Parties, Alice in Wonderland sculptures, family activities and quirky themed garden displays, all sponsored by Witan Investment Trust.

A highlight at RHS Garden Rosemoor, Devon will be an exhibition of illustrations by Eric Kincaid, one of the UK’s finest children’s book illustrators, who introduced a whole new generation to Wonderland in the early 1990s through his bold new illustrations. There will also be regular shows and activities for children at the garden including shadow puppet theatre, storytelling workshops and a creepy crawlies roadshow with exotic spiders, snakes, insects and lizards.

To celebrate the Year of the Sunflower, RHS Garden Wisley in Surrey is trialling more than 25 different sunflowers in 2015, and RHS Garden Rosemoor has taken some of these to create a specially designed walk that will make younger visitors feel they are shrinking as they wander along it. Shorter cultivars of sunflower, including ‘Teddy Bear’ and ‘Bambino’, will give way to taller and taller selections, finishing with those such as ‘Tall Timber’ and ‘Giraffe’, which tower over visitors.

RHS Garden Wisley is offering free Alice in Wonderland-inspired family activities such as craft and storytelling. There are planting schemes throughout the garden, with second-year Horticulture Diploma students designing a bedding scheme that includes a 3-D caterpillar relaxing on a mushroom, and also bronze sculptures of Alice, the Mad Hatter, the March Hare and the Cheshire Cat and others, made by the Robert James Workshop. Visitors can follow the white rabbit on a trail for the Queen of Heart’s stolen jam tarts.

At RHS Garden Harlow Carr, North Yorkshire there will be giant topiary sculptures of well-known Wonderland characters fresh from the RHS Hampton Court Flower Show. Visitors will also be able to follow an Alice in Wonderland-themed trail, enjoy storytelling at the Mad Hatter’s tea party table and play flamingo croquet on the lawn. As well as a host of gardening-inspired daily activities, from craft workshops to mud making and pond dipping, there’s a chance to relax in the garden every Sunday afternoon with live music near Bettys Tea House.

The family activities at RHS Garden Hyde Hall, Essex include Wednesday workshops on how to decorate sweet treats and make a jam tart, theatre skills workshops, Wonderland puppet making, and the chance to make paper using recycled plant materials from the garden.

All four of the gardens will be offering Mad Hatter’s Tea Party events throughout the summer, from outdoor picnics to the chance to celebrate an ‘un-birthday’ in the restaurant.

Prices and activities vary across the gardens – for more information visit www.rhs.org.uk
 

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Notes to editors

For more details and images, please contact Hannah Dolby or Caroline Craig, 0207 821 3042.

Photographs are available to download at www.rhs.photoshelter.com. Registration is a simple process and free of charge. Please contact pressoffice@rhs.org.uk to gain access.

Opening times and ticket prices may vary by event and garden. Full details can be found at www.rhs.org.uk. RHS members enjoy free entry to RHS Gardens (entitlements may vary according to membership type) and discounted entry to RHS Flower Shows.

About the RHS
The Royal Horticultural Society was founded in 1804 by Sir Joseph Banks and John Wedgwood to inspire passion and excellence in the science, art and practice of horticulture. Our vision is to enrich everyone’s life through plants, and make the UK a greener, healthier, happier and more beautiful place. We believe everyone in every village, town and city should benefit from growing plants to enhance lives, build stronger, healthier, happier communities and create better places to live.

We held our first flower shows in 1820, were granted a Royal Charter in 1861 and acquired RHS Garden Wisley, our flagship garden, in 1903. From our first meetings in a small room off London’s Piccadilly, we have grown to become the world’s largest gardening charity. At our gardens and shows and through our scientific research, publications, libraries and our education and community programmes we inspire a passion for gardening and growing plants, promote the value of gardens, demonstrate how gardening is good for us and explain the vital roles that plants undertake.

The RHS is committed to bring the joy of gardening to millions more people, inspire the next generation of gardeners and invest in the future to safeguard a £10.4 billion industry employing more than 300,000 people. We are entirely funded by our members, visitors and supporters. RHS membership is for anyone with an interest in gardening. Support the RHS and help us secure a healthy future for gardening. For more information call: 020 3176 5820, or visit www.rhs.org.uk/join

RHS Registered Charity No. 222879/SC038262

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About the RHS

The RHS believes that gardening improves the quality of life and that everyone should have access to great garden experiences. As a charity we help to bring gardening into people's lives and support gardeners of all levels and abilities; whether they are expert horticulturists or children who are planting seeds for the very first time.

RHS membership is for anyone with an interest in gardening. Support the RHS and secure a healthy future for gardening. For more information call: 0845 130 4646, or visit www.rhs.org.uk

RHS Registered Charity No. 222879/SC038262