Showcasing a world of edible inspiration, the newly planted Wildlife garden at Royal Horticultural Society Wisley Hilltop, the home of Gardening Science is burgeoning. The highly skilled edibles team of Royal Horticultural Society gardeners have poured everything they’ve got into planting up the new one acre space.
A central path of pergolas brimming with passionfruit, hop and squash leads you through the three main areas.
FIRST is the Edible Flowers and Herbs Garden. I’ve always found that many gardeners believe they’re for growing flowers or vegetables in their gardens, but less often, do people grow both. It’s always made me chuckle that many of the prized blooms grown by flower fans in gardens are actually edible, or perhaps the leaves, fruit or roots. As a studio we were inspired to develop a planting scheme that would surprise and delight visitors on just which plants could sustain a hungry gardeners appetite for food as well as flowers using plants that are traditionally considered purely ornamental.
SECOND is the Good To Grow Garden. Harnessing a wealth of experience and knowledge (why wouldn’t you!), our studio worked alongside the RHS edibles team to showcase an exciting range of edible plant species and varieties that would offer the very best chances of success, to inspire beginners. These are the plants which really want to grow, allowing you the confidence (and joy!) in creating your own plot to plate experience once back at home. Climbers, brassicas, soft fruit, dig and no dig, plantings are arranged at ground level (no raised beds in this area – couldn’t be easier to recreate?) in a layout inspired by the vascular bundles in plant stems. And although these beds are glorious together, a single bed could be recreated in a small garden, whilst container plantings offer inspiration for those with no garden at all.
THIRD is the world maze garden. Celebrating the diversity of food and the people who grow it, get lost in a cornucopia of plants including Achocha (enjoyed in South America), Ajmud (from India), Quinoa, Chick peas and a range of companion planting to bring the pollinators in. Arches sourced from Harrod Horticultural will be festooned with snake gourds, jack beans and Tromboncino – all the final variety selections made by the RHS edibles team, with great excitement!
And that’s not to mention the apple walk, greenhouse produce and trained fruit selections which include gages, nectarines and peaches upon a beautiful (deer and rabbit proof!) new boundary fence.
A whole new way of growing edibles to inspire conversation, engagement, future food stories and diversity in what we all ultimately eat.
Ten more days. Are you as excited as we are?!
Opening on 24th June 2021.