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Jim Gardiner

Jim Gardiner Director of Horticulture RHS Garden Wisley

Jim Gardiner is the recently appointed Director of Horticulture for the Royal Horticultural Society and has previously been Curator and Chief Curator based at Wisley for over twenty years. Before that he was Curator at the Hillier Gardens and Arboretum. His primary interest is in woody plants, in particular Magnolias on which he has written two books, “Magnolias, their Care and Cultivation” and “Magnolias, A Gardener’s Guide”.

  • Date Joined: 12 Jul 2007

Summer sunshine, flowers and fun at Wisley

Posted by Jim Gardiner on 22 Jul 2009 at 03:18 PM

Colourful July, and we're at the peak of the season.  If you're coming to visit us this week look out for some of these:

On the corner of the Laboratory, the trumpet vine Campis radicans is creating a vertical carpet of deep orange.  On the Top Terrace, the flowers are really starting to perform.  It's creating quite a stir, and looks very pretty.  I love annuals!


Along the Canal, itself full of waterlilies, the half-hardy borders are wooing the crowds.  Dahlias, agapanthus, penstemons and more create a colourful display.


And on Seven Acres, the Grass Borders are full of shape and texture, with clumps of red hot poker (Kniphofia) and sea holly (Eryngium) among the straight-leaved grasses. 


We have refreshed the planting in the Eros Garden, one of the popular Model Gardens, and the teams are staking and disbudding dahlias to keep the displays looking fresh for the next few weeks, if not months. 


School summer holidays begin now, and the garden is gearing up for a whole lot of fun.  We start this weekend with the Wisley Sports Weekend, and in August we have a month long plan of activities as everyone under 16 gets free entry.  The horticultural highlights include the opening of the Maize Maze.  The Trials and Fruit department have been hard at work preparing the site and now the maize is growing tall and lush.  It is fronted by subtropical plantings this year, and the dahlia 'Weston Pirate' to accompany our pirate theme, complete with a wonderful Pirate Ship with Jolly Roger flag as the central destination. (And our appreciation goes to Thompson and Morgan for all their input into supplying these plants). 

Of course, never forget that July at Wisley means the Mixed Borders, Glasshouse Borders, Monocot Borders, Model Veg Garden, Fruit Field, Seven Acres and the Glasshouse will all vie for your attention, many of which I've discussed in previous blogs, and the list could go on.  Come see for yourself and have some summer fun. 


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