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When it comes to gardening, whether you’re a seasoned pro or a budding beginner, this guide to UK flower shows will be a handy resource to help you plan which horticultural havens you want to visit in 2020.
Garden and flower shows provide a wonderful way to gain inspiration for the cultivation of your own personal plots, as well as being a fantastic way to enjoy a day out with your loved ones during a UK break.
Read on to uncover our favourite UK flower shows…
This spring flower show in North Yorkshire is a major event in the gardening world calendar, marking the start of a new season and full of inspiration for your summer gardening ahead!
Home to Britain’s largest flower arranging and floristry exhibition, as well as Spring show gardens, experts in the GROW! Garden Theatre, and the Plant Nursery Pavilion hosting dozens of displays from the UK’s best nurseries.
When: 23rd – 26th April
Where: Great Yorkshire Showground, Harrogate, HG2 8NZ
More info: flowershow.org.uk
Returning for its fifth year is The National Flower Show hosted in the city of Chelmsford in Essex and this year it will be officially opened by George Clarke, Channel 4’s The Restoration Man.
Featured this year is the Wizard of Oz Floral Experience within the wonderful Hylands House offering an enchanting display, along with a brand new Cream Tea Marquee, as well as the old favourites like the Outdoor Plant Village, Food & Drink Pavilion and the Gardening Talks.
When: 15th – 17th May
Where: Hylands House, Chelmsford, CM2 8WQ
More info: nationalflowershow.co.uk
Perhaps the biggest, most well-known of all the horticultural shows, the RHS Chelsea Flower Show stands above the rest, and not just because the royal family visit every year! Of all the RHS garden shows, a gardening novice is likely to have heard of Chelsea, with it still held in the heart of London in the grounds of the Royal Chelsea Hospital.
Within the Great Pavilion you can find the Discover Zone, a deep dive into educational exhibits detailing the latest science from the horticultural world, shop around some of the world’s top nurseries and growers, and be amazed by the creativity shown in all of the show gardens.
When: 19th – 23rd May
Where: Royal Hospital Chelsea, London, SW11 4BY
More info: rhs.org.uk
Providing a wonderful gardener’s day out, this Kent flower show can be found in the lovely village of Detling.
Set up in the Kent Showground, it will feature over 300 exhibitors, a floral marquee, as well as some of the spectacular medal winners from the Chelsea Flower Show, so you can still catch a glimpse of the winning displays in person if you missed out!
When: 23rd – 25th May
Where: Kent Showground, Detling, ME14 3JF
More info: kentgardenshow.com
Be inspired in the historic city of Edinburgh at this Scottish garden show, held at the Royal Highland Centre, which turns twenty-one this year! Celebrate your love of plants at this Edinburgh flower show by enjoying all it has to offer; from the incredible Show Gardens, to Botanical Art displays, and advice on how to make your garden more wildlife friendly with Garden 4 Life.
A firm favourite and setting it apart from many other UK gardening shows is Gardening Scotland’s The Big Back Garden, a place where children can play and relax with bouncy castles, garden games and even birds of prey displays, ensuring this Scotland garden show will impress all ages!
When: 29th – 31st May
Where: The Royal Highland Centre, Edinburgh
More info: gardeningscotland.com
Immerse yourself in the wonders of the Peak District by visiting this wonderful RHS flower show held at the extraordinary Chatsworth House & Gardens.
Set within the grounds of one of Derbyshire‘s grandest estates, this show provides a wealth of inspiration for every budding gardener, with opportunities to learn from plant experts, browse an expansive Plant Village, and marvel at the unique garden designs on display.
When: 11th – 14th June
Where: Chatsworth House & Gardens, DE45 1PP
More info: rhs.org.uk
With much of this fantastic gardener’s paradise hosted indoors in Birmingham’s NEC Arena, it’s guaranteed to offer a great day out no matter what the British summer weather is doing in the heart of England.
The stars of Gardeners’ World all convene at this Birmingham garden show to give you expert advice and encouragement on what you can do to improve your gardens at home, with familiar faces like Monty Don, Carol Klein, Alan Titchmarsh and even special appearances from Mary Berry and Tom Kerridge! All of this, alongside amazing show gardens, a great selection of plants and flowers for sale, and some fabulous food stalls!
When: 18th – 21st June
Where: NEC Birmingham, B40 1NT
More info: bbcgardenersworldlive.com
Lying on the fringes of the quintessentially British Cotswolds Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, in Woodstock, is the elegant Blenheim Palace, this year hosting its eighth flower show amongst the lovely Oxfordshire countryside.
This year, expect to see an as yet unannounced celebrity guest opening up the show, completing a Question and Answer session in the Garden Talks Theatre. A brand new Floral Street will see some new exhibitors displaying their plants in a unique and creative way, offering you a chance to be inspired with new ways of showcasing plants, and helping you decide on what to purchase from the great selection in the Grand Floral Pavilion.
When: 26th – 28th June
Where: Blenheim Palace, Woodstock, OX20 1PP
More info: blenheimflowershow.co.uk
Branding itself as the garden festival of the summer, this flower show near London takes place in the heat of summer in one of the UK’s most iconic palaces.
Home to the Festival of Roses marquee which provides a stage for the latest breeds of these classically beautiful flowers, and a Country Living marquee which is filled with artisan crafts and independent sellers, which feature in the magazine, selling some truly unique items.
When: 7th – 12th July
Where: Hampton Court Palace, Surrey, KT8 9AU
More info: rhs.org.uk
Bringing an RHS 2020 show up north once again is the RHS Flower Show at Tatton Park enjoying a great location in the town of Knutsford, settled in the Cheshire countryside, easily accessible from those in the North West and North Wales areas.
Be amazed at the upcoming talent of garden design with the RHS Young Designer of the Year entrants showcasing some spectacular creativity, along with expert growers in the Floral Marquee which spans the width of the showground, as well as the family-fun haven of Green Fields where a host of activities and workshops can entertain the kids!
When: 22nd – 26th July
Where: Tatton Park, Cheshire, WA16 6QN
More info: rhs.org.uk
Putting on the largest free horticultural show in the North West is Knowsley Flower Show in Huyton, Liverpool, with the last event being a special one as this UK garden show turned twenty-one in 2019!
It saw some new categories added to the list of classes including Floral Art depicting the moon landing, and some new craft ones too, whilst the old favourites like live music, a farmers market and a fantastic multicultural community zone were still much-loved by all.
When: 9th August
Where: Court Hey Park, Liverpool, L16 3NA
More info: knowsleyflowershow.com
With music throughout the day, expert gardeners offering top tips and celebrity chefs creating indulgent dishes in the food hall, it’s no wonder that this UK flower show in Shrewsbury will be in its 133rd year!
Championship showjumping, thrilling motorbike displays and a mesmerising fireworks finale to close will make you almost forget you’re at a garden show; all this alongside a world of flowers and plants to marvel at and purchase.
When: 14th & 15th August
Where: The Quarry, Shrewsbury
More info: shrewsburyflowershow.org.uk
Confirmed to be attending this lovely garden show in Southport is Mr Plant Geek (AKA Michael Perry) coming to bring all his expert knowledge from his 18 years of experience in horticulture, alongside several other gardening stars.
Find a treasure trove of plants and flowers in the Grand Floral Marquee, the breath-taking Show Gardens, and the Food Festival area which sees some top chefs create mouth-watering meals from fresh, quality produce.
When: 20th – 23rd August
Where: Victoria Park, PR8 1RX
More info: southportflowershow.co.uk
Closing our UK flower show guide is another fabulous event hosted by the RHS, in the beginnings of autumn, adding to the excellent collection of flower shows in the home counties.
Wisely is the RHS’s flagship garden spanning a staggering 240 acres of grounds, with the show hosting special features like the annual National Dahlia Society Show, and the National Association of Flower Arrangement Societies doing demonstrations, among the vast array of exhibitors too.
When: 8th – 13th September
Where: RHS Garden Wisely, Surrey GU23 6QB
More info: rhs.org.uk
Stop and (literally!) smell the roses and incorporate one of these fabulous garden shows into a Sykes self-catered UK holiday, choosing from our extensive collection of cottages and for more things flora, take a look at our guide to spring flowers.
Image credits: Oast House Archive – CC BY-SA 2.0; Herry Lawford – CC BY 2.0; Kent Wang – CC BY-SA 2.0; Amanda Slater – CC BY-SA 2.0; Herry Lawford – CC BY 2.0; Stephen Boisvert – CC BY 2.0; Herry Lawford – CC BY 2.0; Jon Tandy – CC BY-SA 2.0; Herry Lawford – CC BY 2.0; Sheila Sund – CC BY 2.0
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