CARDIFF RHS FLOWER SHOW 2019

Article by David Marks
The Cardiff RHS Flower Show has one advantage that none of the other RHS shows can offer, it’s the first one to be held each year. Unlike many of the others, it is early enough in the year to gain inspiration and act on it. April, when the show is held, is early enough in the year to successfully plant all those shrubs, plants and vegetables.

This totally independent guide from GardenFocused is intended to provide you with information about the show to help you enjoy it more. It opens up below with several top tips about the show, and you won’t find these anywhere else!

For 2019, the show will be held at Bute Park, Cardiff Castle, Cardiff CF10 1BJ from Friday 12 April to Sunday 14 April. Friday and Saturday opening hours are 10.00am to 5.30pm, on the Sunday they close an hour earlier at 4.30.

Tip Number One is that at 4.00 on the last day of the show, plants are sold off cheaply by the exhibitors in the Floral Marquee and Plant Village. Be there on time and pick up bargain, show quality plants and shrubs.

Tip Number Two is to pre-book your parking space (cost £10 or £5 for disabled) or use the Park and Ride (see tip Three below). We arrived just half an hour after the show opened (10.00am) in 2018 and were refused entry to the car park, along with many others. All the spaces had been taken except for those who had pre-booked.

Also be aware that very close to the date of the show, pre-booking may not be possible because all spaces may well have been taken. Certainly on Friday evening, the RHS website was reporting that all spaces for the Saturday and Sunday had been booked.

We only just managed to find a space in a nearby car park (£11.00) but spaces anywhere near Bute Park were filling up extremely fast and we suspect that there would be none available by as early as 11.30am.

Top Tip Three is that unless you are able to pre-book, we would strongly recommend that you use the Park and Ride on the Friday and Sunday, there is no Park and Ride on the Sunday. The Cardiff East Park and Ride runs every 15 minutes and the post code for sat navs is CF23 8HH near J29 of the M4. The bus will drop you off in the city centre and there are clear signs to the show.

Top Tip Number Four is to wear wellingtons or similar weather proof footwear. On the day we visited the weather was dry but even so, the grassed areas were bare and slippery. If the weather was wet, walking off the narrow paths could cause significant walking problems.

Top Tip Number Five is to be prepared for significant traffic jams on show days. RHS Cardiff is a very popular show and the whole town jams up with cars. Allow an extra 40 minutes or so just to travel the last couple of miles. It’s not a problem for most but being aware that this will be the case makes it less stressful.

Your Top Tips, if you have any additional tips to help other readers, use our comments section at the end of this article. We will add them so that others can be helped.

The show is aimed firstly at entertaining families with events and activities throughout the day for kids of all ages and adults. It’s also aimed at gardeners, from newcomers to this hobby through to seasoned experts.

WHEELBARROW GARDEN COMPETITION

Let’s face it, if you visit the Cardiff Show as a family it’s important to keep your children interested in what’s going on. There’s plenty for them to do and see at this show including the chance to create their very own flower arrangement.

Each year the RHS set a theme for the Wheelbarrow Garden competition. In 2017 it was Myths and Legends of Wales, in 2018 it was The Sea. In 2019 the theme is Year of Discovery which is very open to interpretation. The winners each year are decided by visitors to the show by vote. The top three wheelbarrow garden win prizes of National Garden Gift Vouchers.

Only 60 entries were allowed in 2018 and the same is likely for the 2019 competition. So entrants need to register their entries early.

Youngsters will be fascinated to see how other children from local schools and organisations have created mini-themed gardens in wheelbarrows. Even adults will be impressed by this annual competition.

The picture above was of a wheelbarrow garden entitled “An Octupus’s Garden”. Colourful yes, but with a very definite message behind it. Plastics in the sea dramatically affect sea life.

The above wheelbarrow garden also illustrates some of the plastic which can be found in the sea.

SHOW GARDENS AT RHS CARDIFF SHOW

Show gardens should inspire amateur gardeners to develop ideas which can be used when they develop their own gardens. There are several show gardens each year at the RHS Cardiff show each year and they definitely achieve their intended objective.

Reflection in the Past Garden
RHS Flower Show Cardiff

FLORAL MARQUEES RHS FLOWER SHOW CARDIFF

The demand to exhibit in the floral marquee at RHS Flower Show Cardiff is so great that a few years ago they expanded the show area to two marquees. The range of plants and gardening accessories is expansive and all can be bought on site, often at a discount.

Hosta Display by Brookfield Plants
RHS Flower Show Cardiff

It does become very crowded in the floral marquees throughout most of the day but this is normal at these large shows. Because the show is held in April the temperature inside the marquees is very pleasant.

FOOD AT THE RHS FLOWER SHOW CARDIFF

The number of food outlets at the show is astonishingly large and the cover all types of cuisine. Visitors are certainly spoilt for choice. Prices are on the high side with a plain burger costing £5.80 and high prices again for soft drinks. But this is common at events of this type. If you are on a budget it will be worthwhile bringing your own food and drinks.

Seating however is in very short supply and there is an endless stream of people circling the seating areas looking for seats. Some of the seats are in a covered area but by no means all.

One way to solve this problem is to buy your food first and then sit around the bandstand where there are far more vacant seats. Listening to music while you munch your lunch is an excellent way to spend half an hour.

The music goes on all day with two different bands rotating every hour. The programme for the bandstand is well shown near that area if you are particular about the type of music you want to listen to.

TALKS AT THE RHS FLOWER SHOW CARDIFF

Throughout each of the three days there are a series of talks from celebrities and experts in all matters gardening. These are held in a covered marquee and the program is clearly displayed just outside it.

These are not just rainy day attractions, they are well worth attending whatever the weather. In 2018 we listened to Matthew Biggs from Gardeners Question Time and it was very entertaining and informative. Each talk lasts about 20 minutes. Our top vote for 2019 goes to Jonathan Moseley, Floral Designer

Bute Park 

Just a short walk from Cardiff Castle and the city centre is Bute Park, an extensive area of mature parkland, flanked by the River Taff, Sophia Gardens, Pontcanna Fields and the castle. Few places can boast such a spacious green area in the heart of their city – a very popular ‘green lung’ full of historic and wildlife interest. Containing a stunning, nationally significant arboretum with 50 UK ‘Champion Trees’, Bute Park attracts over 1,000,000 visits a year and plays a vital role in the city’s events calendar – the RHS Show Cardiff is just one of such flagship events.

Bute Park was once the ‘back garden’ of Cardiff Castle and therefore they share a common history, and have played significant roles in the development of the city from Roman and medieval times, through the industrial revolution, up until the modern city of Cardiff we know today. From 1873, the southern section was laid out by Andrew Pettigrew for the Bute family as Cardiff Castle’s private pleasure grounds. In 1947 the 5th Marquess of Bute presented much of Bute Park, nearby Sophia Gardens and Cardiff Castle itself, as a gift to the people of the city.

{WIDGET:GALLERY97}

Bute Park

  • Grade 1 listed historic park: Listed, along with Cardiff Castle, on the Cadw Register of Landscapes, Parks and Gardens of Special Historic Interest in Wales.
  • Blackfriars Friary: An unusual layout of medieval Friary remains which was excavated in the late 19th century by the third Marquess of Bute and interpreted in Victorian brick to show the original building plan.
  • Bute Park Arboretum: Created in 1947 and contains a mix of interesting and ornamental trees. Many of these are champion trees, the biggest examples of their type in the UK.
  • Animal Wall: The iconic William Burges landmark was cleaned and conserved in 2010 for the delight of residents and visitors.
  • Herbaceous border: A renowned herbaceous border runs alongside the River Taff.
  • Mill Leat: The line of the former medieval millstream and mill pond, running below the walls of Cardiff Castle has been re-flooded to restore beautiful views of the castle and enhance the character of this forgotten corner of the park.
  • Dock feeder: The slow flowing waters of the feeder canal bely its function as a supply of water to Cardiff’s Docks. The feeder is a haven for wildlife and provides a contrast to the more formal areas of parkland.
  • Gorsedd stones: Despite their ancient appearance, the stones recall Cardiff’s hosting of the National Eisteddfod in 1978.
  • Sculpture trail: A series of timber sculptures, created from tree trunks in the arboretum provide interest throughout the park.
  • Blackweir and Salmon pass: During October salmon can be seen leaping the weir to get to their spawning grounds higher up the river.
  • Castle (featured building)
  • Description: The motte was built in 1081. Thereafter, the castle was modified and made more comfortable throughout following centuries.
  • Earliest Date: 25 Dec 1080
  • Latest Date: 25 Dec 1080

  • Gate
  • Description: Wrought iron gates.
  • Ornamental Bridge
  • Description: Swiss bridge.
  • Earliest Date: 01 Jan 1875
  • Latest Date: 01 Jan 1963
  • Specimen Tree
  • Description: There are specimen trees to the west of the castle.
  • Tree Feature
  • Description: Arboretum.
  • Earliest Date: 01 Jan 1947
  • Latest Date: 01 Jan 1947
  • Planting
  • Description: Maple 1. Acer acuminatum – West Himalayan Maple 2. Acer cappadocicum – Caucasian Maple 3. Acer cappadocicum – “Aureum” 4. Acer henryi – Golden Caucasian Maple 5. Acer japonicum “Aconitifolium” – Aconite-leaved Japanese Maple 6. Acer palmatum – Japanese Maple 7. Acer palmatum “Atropurpureum – Japanese Maple 8. Acer palmatum “Dissectum” – Japanese Maple 9. Acer palmatum “Shishigashira” – Japanese Maple 10. Acer pictum – Korean Maple 11. Acer platanoides – Norway Maple 12. Acer platanoides “Cleveland” – Norway Maple 13. Acer platanoides “Dissectum” – Cut-leaved Norway Maple 14. Acer platanoides “Drummondii” Drummond’s Variegated Norway Maple 15. Acer platanoides “Goldsworth Purple” – Purple Norway Maple 16. Acer platanoides “Laciniatum” – Cut-leaved Norway Maple 17. Acer platanoides “Rubrum” – Red Norway Maple 18. Acer pseudoplatanus “Leopoldii” – Leopold’s Sycamore 19. Acer tataricum – Tatarian Maple 20. Acer triflorum ? Manchurian Maple 21. Acer truncatum – Shangdong Maple 22. Acer x dieckii – Hybrid Maple
  • Planting
  • Description: Horse Chestnut 1. Aesculus californica – Californian Horse Chestnut 2. Aescalus chinensis – Chinese Horse Chestnut 3. Aescalus hippocastarnum – Horse Chestnut 4. Aescalis indica – Indian Horse Chestnut 5. Aesculus x carnea “Plantierensis” – Red Horse Chestnut
  • Planting
  • Description: Alder 1. Alnus hirsute – Hairy Alder 2. Alnus incana “Aurea” – Golden Grey Alder 3. Alnus incana “Pendula Kebe” – Pendulous Grey Alder 4. Alnus incana “Pendula” – Weeping Grey Alder 5. Alnus maximowiczii – Maximowicz’s Alder
  • Planting
  • Description: Miscellaneous trees and shrubs 25. Metasequoia glyptostroboides – Dawn Redwood 26. Nyssa sylvatica ? Tupelo 27. Parrotia persica – Persian Ironwood 28. Paulownia fortunei – Fortune’s Paulownia 29. Paulownia tomentosa – Imperial Tree of Japan 30. Phellodendron chinense – Phellodendron 31. Photinia x fraseri “Red Robin” – Photinia 32. Phygelius aequalis “Trewidden Pink”- Angel’s Trumpet 33. Podocarpus salignus ? conifer 34. Pseudolarix amabilis – Golden Larch 35. Pseudotsuga menziesii “Pendula” in June Weeping Douglas Fir 36. Pterocarya fraxinifolia – Caucasian Wing-nut 37. Pterocarya x rehderiana – Hybrid Wingnut 38. Pyrus calleryana “Chanticleer” 39. Pyrus nivalis – White Pear 40. Rhus potaninii – Chinese Sumach 41. Robinia x ambigua “Decaisneana” – Pink Acacia 42. Sequoiadendron giganteum – Wellingtonia 43. Sophora tetraptera – New Zealand Kowhai 44. Taxodium ascendans – Swamp Cypress 45. Tetradium daniellii – Evodia 46. Trachycarpus fortunei – Chusan Palm 47. Trochodendron aralioides – Trochodendron 48. Zelkova serrata – Japanese Zelkova

  • Planting
  • Description: Camellia 1. Camellia sasanqua – Autumn Camellia 2. More than a dozen other unnamed Camellias
  • Planting
  • Description: Hornbeam/Hop Hornbeam 1. Carpinus betulus “Columnaris” – Columnar Hornbeam 2. Carpinus turczaninowii – Shrubby Hornbeam 3. Ostrya carpinifolia – Hop Hornbeam 4. Ostrya japonica – Japanese Hop Hornbeam 5. Ostrya virginiana – Hop Hornbeam
  • Planting
  • Description: Sweet Chestnut 1. Castanea sativa – Sweet Chestnut 2. Castanea sativa “Albo-marginata” – Variegated Chestnut
  • Planting
  • Description: Catalpa or Catawba 1. Catalpa bignonioides “Nana” – Dwarf Indian Bean Tree 2. Catalpa ovata – Chinese Catalpa 3. Catalpa x erubescens “Purpurea” ? Purple Indian Bean Tree
  • Planting
  • Description: Cedar 1. Cedrus atlantica “Glauca” – Blue Cedar 2. Cedrus deodara ? Deodar 3. Cedrus libani – Cedar of Lebanon 4. Cryptomeria japonica – Japanese Cedar
  • Planting
  • Description: Cypress 1. Chamaecyparis lawsoniana “Wisselii – Wissel’s Lawson’s Cypress 2. Chamaecyparis nootkatensis “Pendula” – Pendulous Nootka Cypress 3. Cupressus arizonica “Glabra” – Arizona Cypress 4. Cupressus macrocarpa “Donard Gold” – Golden Monterey Cypress 5. Cupressus macrocarpa “Goldcrest” – Golden Monterey Cypress 6. Cupressus sempervirens – Italian Cypress
  • Planting
  • Description: Hawthorn 1. Crataegus “Autumn Glory” – Autumn Glory Thorn 2. Crataegus azarolus var. sinaica – Azarole 3. Crataegus heldreichii – Grecian Thorn 4. Crataegus laciniata – Oriental Thorn 5. Crataegus monogyna “Pendula Rosea” – Pink Weeping Thorn 6. Crataegus schraderiana – Balkan Thorn
  • Planting
  • Description: Tulip Tree 1. Liriodendron chinense – Chinese Tulip Tree 2. Liriodendron tulipifera – Tulip Tree 3. Liriodendron tulipifera “Aureomarginatum” – Variegated Tulip Tree 4. Liriodendron tulipifera “Integrifolia” – Unlobed Tulip Tree
  • Planting
  • Description: Ash 1. Faxinus americana “Autumn Purple” – White Ash 2. Fraxinus excelsior “Jaspidea” – Yellow-twigged Ash 3. Fraxinus ornus – Manna Ash 4. Fraxinus pennsylvanica – Green Ash 5. Fraxinus sogdiana – Turkish Ash
  • Planting
  • Description: Holly 1. Ilex aquifolium “Argentea Marginata” – Broad-leaved Silver Holly 2. Ilex aquifolium “Flavescens” – Moonlight Holly 3. Ilex kingiana – Holly 4. Ilex x altaclerensis – Highclere Holly 5. Ilex x altaclerensis “Hendersonii” – Highclere Holly 6. Ilex x koehneana – Holly
  • Planting
  • Description: Magnolia 1. Magnolia acuminata – Cucumber Tree 2. Magnolia campbellii – Himalayan Pink Tulip Tree 3. Magnolia kobus 4. Magnolia liliflora “Nigra” – Lily Magnolia 5. Magnolia obovata 6. Magnolia stellata 7. Magnolia tripetala 8. Magnolia x soulangeana – Soulange’s Magnolia
  • Planting
  • Description: Beech 1. Nothofagus dombeyi – Southern Beech 2. Nothofagus obliqua – Roble Beech 3. Nothofagus solandri var. cliffortioides – Mountain Beech
  • Planting
  • Description: Pine 1. Pinus nigra var. austriaca – Austrian Pine 2. Pinus sylvestris – Scots Pine
  • Planting
  • Description: Plane 1. Platanus orientalis “Digitata” – Digitate Oriental Plane 2. Platanus x hispanica – London Plane

  • Planting
  • Description: Poplar 1. Populus deltoides – Necklace Poplar 2. Populus koreana – Korean Poplar 3. Populus lasiocarpa 4. Populus yunnanensis – Balsam Poplar
  • Planting
  • Description: Oak 1. Quercus agrifolia – Coast Live Oak 2. Quercus cerris – Turkey Oak 3. Quercus ilex – Holm Oak 4. Quercus myrsinifolia – Evergreen Oak 5. Quercus rubra – Red Oak
  • Planting
  • Description: Rhododendron 1. Rhododendron “Yellowhammer” 2. Rhododendron (Azalea) mollis Hybrid in May Molle Azalea 3. Rhododendron Hardy Hybrid
  • Planting
  • Description: Willow 1. Salix babylonica “Pendula” – Weeping Willow 2. Salix babylonica “Tortuosa – Twisted Willow
  • Planting
  • Description: Sorbus (Whitebeam/MountainAsh/Rowan/Service Tree) 1. Sorbus “Wilfred Fox” – Hybrid Whitebeam 2. Sorbus “Winter Cheer” 3. Sorbus alnifolia 4. Sorbus aria – Whitebeam 5. Sorbus aucuparia – Rowan 6. Sorbus commixta 7. Sorbus esserteauana 8. Sorbus graeca 9. Sorbus hupehensis 10. Sorbus latifolia – Service Tree of Fontainbleau 11. Sorbus sargentiana 12. Sorbus scalaris 13. Sorbus torminalis – Wild Service Tree 14. Sorbus ursina – Sorbus 15. Sorbus x kewensis
  • Planting
  • Description: Yew 1. Taxus baccata “Adpressa Variegata” – Golden Yew 2. Taxus baccata “Fastigiata Auromarginata” – Golden Irish Yew
  • Planting
  • Description: Lime 1. Tilia cordata – Small-leaved Lime 2. Tilia cordata “Rancho” – Small-leaved Lime 3. Tilia maximowicziana – Japanese Lime 4. Tilia mongolica – Mongolian Lime 5. Tilia platyphyllos “Laciniata” – Cut-leaved Lime 6. Tilia x euchlora – Lime
  • Planting
  • Description: Dogwood 1. Cornus alternifolia “Argentea” – Pagoda Dogwood 2. Cornus controversa “Variegata” – Table Cornel 3. Cornus florida subspp. urbiniana – Mexican Flowering Dogwood 4. Cornus kousa “Satomi” – Chinese Flowering Dogwood
  • Planting
  • Description: Hydrangea 1. Hydrangea macrophylla “Hortensia Group” – Mop-head Hydrangea 2. Hydrangea paniculata – Hydrangea 3. Hydrangea paniculata “Grandiflora” – Hydrangea 4. Hydrangea quercifolia – Oak-leaved Hydrangea
  • Planting
  • Description: Walnut/Butternut 1. Juglans nigra – Black Walnut 2. Juglans cinerea – Butternut
  • Planting
  • Description: Birch 1. Betula “Fetisowii” – Central Asian Hybrid Birch 2. Betula kenaica – Alaskan Birch 3. Betula utilis var. jacquemontii – Himalayan Birch
  • Planting
  • Description: Miscellaneous trees and shrubs 1. Ailanthus altissima – Tree of Heaven 2. Carya cordiformis ? Bitternut 3. Celtis occidentalis ? Hackberry 4. Cercidium japonicum ?Pendulum? ? Weeping Katsura 5. Cercis Canadensis ?Forest Pansy? ? North American Redbud 6. Choisya ternate ? Mexican Orange Blossom 7. Cladrastis kentukea ? Yellow Wood 8. Corylus colurna – Turkish Hazel 9. Cotoneaster x watereri “John Waterer” 10. Davidia involucrata – Handkerchief Tree 11. Euonymus alatus 12. Ginkgo biloba – Maidenhair Tree 13. Gleditsia triacanthos “Sunburst” – Honey Locust 14. Gymnocladus dioicus – Kentucky Coffee Tree 15. Hamamelis x intermedia “Pallida” – Wych Hazel 16. Idesia polycarpa ? Idesia 17. Illicium anisatum – Japanese Anise 18. Lagerstroemia indica – Crape Myrtle 19. Lavandula angustifolia ? Lavender 20. Ligularia stenocephala “The Rocket” – Leopard Plant 21. Ligustrum lucidum”Excelsum Superbum” – Variegated Chinese Privet 22. Liquidambar styraciflua – Sweet Gum 23. Meliosma myriantha – Meliosma 24. Mespilus germanica – Medlar

Stable Block, Herbaceous Border

Cardiff North

Thoria Mohamed – your Third Sector Development Officer for Cardiff North, and city-wide portfolio: Thriving and Prosperous Economy

(029) 2048 5722

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

I’m the Third Sector Development Officer for Cardiff North and Cardiff East. I also facilitate the Cardiff Third Sector Learning and Enterprise Network, and the Cardiff Third Sector Equality and Human Rights Network. I’ve worked in the third sector for over a decade and a half with some of society’s vulnerable groups, including victims of domestic violence, ethnic minorities, children with disabilities, refugees and asylum seekers. I believe third sector organisations make an inspiring contribution to social justice and social inclusion.

Cardiff North is made up of:

Cyncoed

Heath

Lisvane

Llanishen

Old St Mellons

Penylan

Pentwyn

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Your local representatives

To find the name of your local councillor, visit the Cardiff Council website.

You can find the name of your Assembly Member on the National Assembly for Wales website.

Visit www.theyworkforyou.com to discover the name of your MP.

Cardiff North Action Plan

The aim of the Neighbourhood Action Plans is to coordinate evidence-based multi-agency problem solving. The Action Plans have been developed to ensure that the Partnership groups work to identify need and local solutions to improve the quality of life for citizens under the seven outcomes identified in the What Matters strategy. You can download the Cardiff North Action Plan at www.cardiffpartnership.co.uk/neighbourhood-partnerships/cardiff-north/

Get in touch with Thoria if you have any news or information you’d like to share.

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Wholesale Flowers – is the 5am market worth it?

Traditionally florists, farm shops and small businesses buy fresh flowers from their local wholesale market. The idea of Floriculture as an industry began in the 19th Century when the large houses and country estates of the Victorian Era produced vast quantities of flowers and as the industrial revolution took hold transporting the flowers from the provinces into London became feasible and Covent Garden was born.

But with globalisation things have changed hugely. Flowers are now BIG business with global sales of around $26 billion dollars a year. Many florists and shops buy direct from the Dutch wholesale markets and receive their flowers from their regular refrigerated lorries. In the UK, retail sale of flowers through all outlets (including supermarkets) is bigger than the music industry – a staggering 2.2billion pounds every year

Global Cut Flower retail sales

2014 $26.6 billion 2013 $25.7 billion

2012 $26.3 billion 2011 $25.8 billion

Britain imports around 17% of all of the flowers grown worldwide and the average bouquet travels almost 4400 miles to reach its recipient with a meagre 10% of flowers being British Grown. Flowers supplied to the UK are mainly grown in Ecuador, Columbia, Mexico, Guatemala, Ethiopia and Kenya (with the Netherlands being the port through which nearly all international flowers flow).

So what is going on with local wholesalers and what can florists learn these days by visiting the markets? I went to Cardiff Flower Market last spring to see how the industry copes with a supply chain that cuts out the wholesaler and to see the quality of the flowers coming into the markets first hand.

One of the first things you notice visiting the markets is the price per stem of the blooms, how many blooms must be purchased to ‘count’ as a wholesale purchase and how uniform and unscented everything is. Bearing in mind that VAT in Holland is just 6% for flower sales (compared to 20% here) it is also immediately apparent that the prices plus VAT leave little room for British growers to achieve a good return on wholesale flowers through the wholesale markets and whilst individual blooms might seem quite cheap for florists to buy – the fact they have to buy in bulk means that there is a significant risk of wastage (or florists must operate using a very strict and limited range with little variation).

For example, these allium at 20p a stem seem great value but the minimum order is 10 stems (within a total order of at least £50 or £100). So if you needed just one or two stems then the minimum you will pay is £2.40 plus the requirement to buy large quantities of other blooms. This year The Woodland Farm sold our alliums similar to this (but slightly larger and with more unopened florets) for 80p each. We don’t operate a minimum order size for florists or DIY brides – but we do cut to order so we will charge if people cancel last minute. Not quite as take-it-or-leave it as the cash and carry in Cardiff – but more local for West Wales florists and a much reduced waste or stocking burden.

Similarly alchemilla mollis in the markets is sold in bunches of 25 and all very very open. On the foliage side we found the quality to be variable and not much to inspire – but special items like delphiniums and roses had great conformity and were consistently excellent. The more common foliage items such as hypericum and sisal were also very good quality.

This year, we’ve heard reports that lupins are coming in from abroad in very poor condition which is good for us British Growers – but bad for their flower reputation! Also, with the strikes in Calais holding up imported flowers at the port one of my florists reported today that she’d been told local florists wanting wedding flowers might be lucky to get any unless things start moving quickly…. Yikes!

However, there is always something to learn when you get up for a 5am start – and I especially enjoyed scrutinising how the most delicate blooms are protected and wrapped – and even looking at the content of some of the mixed bouquets was useful (though a little uninspiring)!

Still looking for a source of seed for thlaspi green spire though!

News – News

Cardiff 10K 2017 – Entries Open

Registrations are now open for the 2017 Cardiff 10K on Sunday 3 September. We are pleased to be teaming up with our delivery partners Run 4 Wales for this years race. With a brand new course, and even more runners taking part do not miss out!

Last years race raised over £120,000 for race organisers Kidney Wales and other local good causes.

Whether you are running on your own, with friends / colleagues as a team or with your family in the 2K Family run get yourself registered today. Prices start from just £22.50 for the 10K, and £5 for the 2K Family Run. All runners in the Cardiff 10k will receive a finishers Tshirt and a medal.

If you choose to join #TeamKW and raise funds for Kidney Wales, you will receive a Kidney Wales Running vest for race day, a fundraising pack, your finishers tshirt and a medal. In addition the first 500 fundraisers to sign up will also get themselves a limited edition long sleeve training top. So get yourselves signed up nice and early, and don’t forget to select to run for Kidney Wales. Every penny raised will help their life changing work supporting families and changing lives of patients in Wales.

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