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RHS plans new gardens

I recently visited RHS Hyde Hall. To be honest I wasn’t aware this RHS garden even existed a few months ago. It’s based in Chelmsford, Essex. On arrival, I was expecting a large white Georgian house, but nothing, the ‘hall’ is in fact a traditional farm house. The name dates back many decades and nobody really knows why the locals called it a ‘hall’.

RHS Hyde Hall Vegetable Garden
It’s a great space and like other RHS locations it is divided into zones. The zone I’m most interested to visit currently doesn’t exist. A large field of mud greeted me as I approached because this site is currently under development. The ‘Global Growth Vegetable Garden’ is a new garden which will showcase vegetables from around the world.

Matthew Oliver, RHS Hyde Hall Horticulturist tells me:

“We’re trying to show edible plants sourced from all around the world.”

The RHS gardens design is based around a central glasshouse with beds spanning out until they meet a boundary of hedging with seating areas carved into the hedge. The beds are divided into four quarters, each representing different parts of the world, these will be Europe and the Middle East, South America, North America and Asia.

Construction work on the garden is already under way with hard landscaping to be completed by late spring and planting to take place throughout this summer. This will give them time to establish themselves before the garden is opened to the public in 2017.

RHS Hyde Hall

We have some seasonal gardening advice from Christine Woodhouse, Team Leader at the Hill Top Garden, RHS Hyde Hall.

“This month we’re finishing the last of the pruning on the roses and the wisteria. We are also cutting back any dead growth in our beds and borders and generally getting ready for the busier months of March and April.”

You would think this would be enough for the RHS, but no, in the north of the country they are even busier by taking on a largely forgotten garden which they plan to restore over the next four years.

RHS Garden Bridgewater

Named RHS Garden Bridgewater, the site will be open to the public in 2019 and is being jointly funded by the RHS, Peel Land and Property, and Salford City Council. It will be one of the biggest RHS gardens projects so far.

RHS Director General, Sue Biggs, said:

“We always thought it would take us a long time to find the ideal site for our Fifth Garden, but with its beautiful landscapes, good public transport links and outstanding location, Worsley New Hall was an opportunity we couldn’t miss.”

Next month I’ll be visiting the garden before work commences. Many years ago I lived in Salford and it would have been fantastic to have watched its development from the door step. There will be many visits to Salford over the coming years and I’ll be excited to visit it on a regular basis.

About Sean James Cameron

Based in London, Sean has been gardening since being a teenager. Although vegetables and fruit is the main passion, there is also room for flowers.

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