I had planned a dash to the RHS autumn colour plant show
early yesterday morning, not particularly expecting very much....I think I have
already been fairly vocal about thinking that these shows are getting very
samey with many of the same nurseries, same types of displays and formats,
however yesterday I had a big surprise....
|Fabulous Nerines...nothing unusual there|
The main hall was much as usual...autumn colour is my thing
and there were some displays of dahlias and a good amount of salvias that
I was unfamiliar with. I also got sucked into buying a few ferns, and particularly
some different species and varieties of Polypody as these ferns do so well at
the front of borders and cope with dry shade admirably...often in the wild you
see them colonising dry stone walls.
|Some fabulous Michaelmous daisys mixed with grass, prarie style|
I was pleased to pick up a Kniphofia rooperi...a stunning
red hot poker that looks its best at this time of the year...vivid colour and a
nice chunky poke. I also bought a
replacement Eupatorium capilliaris to give it another chance as I can’t decide
is the winter or the slugs killed it...
However the surprise came when I went to the other
hall....firstly we were directed to the side entrance where we entered into a
dark Heuchera art instillation.....trippy music was playing, and drapes
enclosed the space....projections of colour were on the wall and instillations
of heucheras with lights and vinyl records posed tripping risks. I did wonder
if an organiser had been at the magic mushrooms.
|eh by gum...whats going on?|
A further surprise was in the main hall where three quarters of the space was given
over to more art instillation's...on one side there were things (big olive tree,
rock, block of ice) suspended on ropes high above sand filled planters. Then
there were cages and adventurous corrugated iron planters. Blimey.
|is that passiflora really so dangerous that it needs to be caged?|
|This was my favourite....a block of ice suspended over a planter being raised up and down....however it was very high art meets RHS due to the yellow slip hazard sign....you can also see the bored looking lady in the corner of the room whose job it seemed to be to press the button to make it go up and down. Its not quite the Saatchi gallery....|
I think it was great for the RHS to do something different,
and very adventurous however it must have appealed more to a younger audience and
not their core users...I did wonder if St John Ambulance were on standby in
case some couldn’t cope with the change. Certainly when I was there the stream
of people was more just around the plant stands...those that ventured over to
the art tended to look for the labels of the plants that were being used. However it amused me and I stayed for twice as long as I would usually....go have a look and see for yourself!
So all very exciting, what awaits us at the spring shows?