RHS Calls on the Nation to Spring into Action

Tuesday 17 April 2018

The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) is calling on the nation to get out and garden over the coming weeks and make the most of a short, intense burst of spring flowering, which is predicted to bring the biggest and most beautiful spectacle of colour seen in years.

Recent weather and weeks of cooler conditions mean that this year plants have remained in bud longer and will burst into flower over a shorter space of time as soon as the temperatures rise, so when the hot, sunny weather arrives this weekend, we can expect a condensed explosion of spring flowers such as blossom. But the spring flowers could be over within days as the summer flowers take over.

Guy Barter, RHS Chief Horticulturalist, says: “I would urge people to get outside into their gardens or visit green spaces this weekend as spring could be over in the blink of an eye and you really don’t want to miss what’s coming. Look out for daffodils - they are usually over by now, but later flowers are still stupendous; flowering cherries are at their best and with the rain holding off, will be looking sensational. Magnolias are flowering late, as are camellias and rhododendrons.

“Usually spring begins in March and lasts until mid-May, so this shorter, condensed spring will create magnificent displays in our gardens, public spaces and roadsides across the UK as everything flowers at once.”

Matthew Pottage, Curator at RHS Garden Wisley, says: “It’s been a long wait but it’ll be well worth it. At Wisley we have some excellent cherry blossom displays, camellias are now in full swing and displays of rhododendrons will burst into colour when it heats up. By the weekend, large expanses of wood anemones will be looking at their peak and our alpine meadow which is rich with hoop petticoat daffodils and snakes head fritillaries will be a spectacular sight.”

The upcoming spell of hot weather also provides an opportunity for people to get out into their gardens and green spaces to sow seeds and get planting, ready for summer displays.

Guy adds: “With the wet, miserable weather, many of us haven’t been able to start spring planting, but now gardeners of all levels can start getting their gardens ready. Although it is good to sow seeds and plant in March, plants do little growing until April and peak growth does not occur until June so there is no need to be downhearted as in all likelihood there will be little difference in summer flowering.”

Longer, warmer days and shorter nights mean the risk of frost, which can damage young plants, is reducing by the day. Less rain means that soil is drier so it is a good time to buy plants to restock containers, fill in beds, borders and greenhouses. Garden centres will be packed with plants.


Notes to editors

Notes to Editors: For further information please contact the RHS Press Office on 0207 821 3691 or email pressoffice@rhs.org.uk

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 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, through our scientific research, website, publications, libraries, education and community programmes we inspire a passion for gardening and growing plants. We’re committed to promoting the value of gardens, demonstrating how gardening is good for us and explaining the vital roles that plants play in a sustainable world.

The RHS is committed to bring the joy of gardening to millions more people and inspire the next generation of gardeners. 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