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TheVillage Gardening

The Queen of climbers

Posted on April 30 2016 at 2:56:32 0 comments

Clematis

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May! What a glorious month! Spring is well underway and the delicious promise of summer is tantalisingly close, writes Nicci Gow.

At the end of the month we have the highlight of the gardening calendar – the RHS Chelsea Flower Show. I have been lucky enough to attend for the last few years as part of my role with the Horticultural Trades Association and have enjoyed some behind-the-scenes tours of some of the best show gardens.

For me, though, the pleasure of going is catching up with old friends and colleagues in the industry. One award-winning exhibitor with whom I always enjoy a good chat is Raymond Evison, now well known for his fabulous array of clematis which he breeds on his nursery in Guernsey.

Many moons ago, Ray trained me in the art of propagating and growing clematis, when I spent a year’s work experience as part of my horticultural course at Treasures of Tenbury.

The gardens there, lovingly tended by skilled plantsman John Treasure, showed the versatility of this wonderful plant genus.

Any garden, no matter how small, should have at least one clematis. Covering walls or fences, climbing over pergolas and arches, scrambling though borders or old trees – these plants can fulfil a huge variety of roles.

Over the years Ray has bred many smaller varieties of showy clematis, which look spectacular in pots when trained up a simple obelisk, and even dwarf types for creating an unusual and eye-catching hanging basket.

One of my favourite uses for clematis is as ground cover, and many a border at Treasures was covered with a mass of vivid clematis flowers in early summer.

At Fresh @ Burcot Garden Centre, we buy all our clematis from one of the country’s leading climbing plant growers based just a few miles away at Evesham.

Like us at Fresh, your local garden centre should have a good selection of different varieties in stock now, from early flowerers to late summer showstoppers, small flowers, large flowers, evergreen or herbaceous types – but all easy to grow and perfect to give your garden that Chelsea feeling!

Nicci Gow and her husband Neil are co-owners of Fresh @ Burcot Garden Centre.

Alcester Rd, Burcot, Bromsgrove, B60 1PW
Tel: 01527 873 470
http://www.burcotgardencentre.co.uk     
                       


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