With show season upon us the benefits of getting children involved in gardening will be showcased in the ‘Helping Children Grow’ exhibit, supported by National Garden Gift Vouchers, at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2019.
Research shows that children aren’t playing outside as much as previous generations and spending 17 hours each week watching TV and 20 hours a week online*. As well as being good outdoor fun involvement in gardening at school has been shown to have many benefits to physical health, mental wellbeing, social skills, behaviour and learning**.
The ‘Helping Children Grow’ exhibit, which features in the Discovery Zone of the Great Pavilion, promotes National Children’s Gardening Week which takes place between 25 May - 2 June 2019. Working with National Children’s Gardening Week Ambassador Chris Collins the exhibit features fun and inspiring projects such as edible planters, a pizza wheel, runner bean tipis and a wildlife hotel. There will also be information and images provided by schools and garden centre businesses about the benefits they’ve seen from getting children involved in gardening.
Photocall – Helping Children Grow – Discovery Zone – GP104
On Monday 20 May at 1pm National Children’s Gardening Week Ambassador Chris Collins will be on hand to showcase some innovative ideas to inspire kids, parents and grandparents to have a go in the garden, at school or at their local garden centre. Chris will be joined by two young gardeners from Charlton Manor Primary School in Greenwich.
The exhibit will feature:
Edible ‘GROW’ wording grown by Chilton Primary School in Oxfordshire
Teapots filled with scented pelargoniums planted by children from schools including Galleywood Primary School in Essex, Charlton Manor Primary School in Greenwich and Pershore School in Worcestershire. These schools have been part of an initiative spearheaded by The Sun’s Gardening Correspondent Peter Seabrook.
National Children’s Gardening Week Ambassador and designer of the exhibit Chris Collins comments, “It feels like we have come a long way with children’s gardening in the last 10 years. Campaigns like National Children’s Gardening Week have brought the subject of healthy eating, growing plants and mindfulness to garden centres and schools across the country. This year at Chelsea we aim to celebrate this incredible rise in the numbers of young gardeners and inspire even more young people with simple ideas and fun projects to encourage them, their parents and grandparents to have a go.”
The exhibit will feature herbs, salad, petunias, tomatoes and runner beans along with three new plants, all of which have been entered into the RHS Chelsea Plant of the Year Award.
Nepeta Neptune bred by Kees Jan Kraan and entered by Thompson & Morgan.
This brand new selection of Catmint has a compact upright habit of just 30cm. It is ideal for borders and patio pots. This low maintenance perennial is hardy down to -25ºC and will flower from June to September. Its flowers are mauve blue with beautiful dark blue spots.
Ajuga Princess Nadia bred by Nadia Plants and entered by Thompson & Morgan.
Ajuga tenorii ‘Princess Nadia’ brings together the best variegated foliage and flower spikes of the genus. A controlled creeping habit, true hardiness, and evergreen foliage offers a wide range of garden uses and year-round interest. This truly is a plant for all seasons.
Apple Eden bred by Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) and entered by Frank P Matthews.
The first of its kind, Eden is a non-browning commercial and garden apple. Delicious for fresh eating and cooking, it has a whole host of uses including cooking down to a snow-white puree that is sweet, so no additional sugar is needed. It is easy to grow and disease resistant.
Many thanks to exhibit supporters including Aylett Nurseries, Frank P Matthew’s, Gardener’s Kitchen, Lindum Turf, Melcourt Industries, Suttons, Thompson & Morgan, Volmary, Woodlodge and Worfield Plants. A special mention to HTA staff Caroline and Natalie who have grown the runner beans and tomatoes!
More information on the new plants and ‘Helping Children Grow’ exhibit can be found at www.hta.org.uk/chelsea2019
To find out more about National Children’s Gardening Week 2019 and events taking place in UK garden centres during the week visit - www.childrensgardeningweek.co.uk
or join in the fun on twitter @NCGW_
*National Trust (2012) Our Natural Childhood Report
**HTA Report - School Gardening in the UK