One of the newest members of the Trials Department team is Hazel Kennedy. She started in mid September having just completed the two year Wisley Diploma in Practical Horticulture. Although everyone works on everything, each member of the team has particular plant trials that they take responsibility for, and for Hazel it is the pansies.
Pansies provide colour throughout the winter months. In the Trials Field it means that there is a colourful reason to visit this year, along with the other attractions including Sempervivum (houseleek), Cortaderia (pampas grass) and cabbages.
Hazel says her personal favourites so far are from the Nature Series since they have a nice bright habit, are very floriferous and have established well in a short time. Mind you, the trial is ongoing until spring, and we are assessing them over a long period.
Aside from hoeing they do not require a lot of care, yet they still perform. According to Hazel, this is an ideal first trial to work on since the pansies are a pleasure to work with due to their eye-catching colour and smiley faces.