Behind The Genes - RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2019

Behind The Genes at RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2019

The Partnership

We're so pleased to be partnering Sparsholt College Hampshire on their Behind the Genes garden at RHS Chelsea Flower Show this year. Months of planning have gone into the creation of this informative and engaging garden.

The Garden

The garden is in the Discovery area of the Great Pavilion (Stand GPA154) and offers a visually inspiring insight into the processes of plant breeding and explains techniques used to bring about improvements in plant species. Students at Sparsholt College have been involved in the design of the garden and have nurtured the plants that will be featured on the garden to illustrate various key milestones in plant breeding over the years.

View the full list of plants used in the garden

Behind The Genes Garden Illustration

The History

Thompson & Morgan has long been at the forefront of plant breeding and can put its name to a number of key breeding breakthroughs over the years, such as Foxglove or Digitalis 'Illumination Pink' which won RHS Chelsea Plant of the Year in 2012 and which will feature on the Behind the Genes garden. Also appearing at RHS Chelsea 2019 is last year's Plant of the Year winner, Hydrangea hybrid Runaway Bride® 'Snow White', and the amazing sunflower, Helianthus SunBelievable™ 'Brown Eyed Girl' which was placed third.

digitalis illumination pink
helianthus sunbelievable brown eyed girl
hydrangea runaway bride

The Plants

Following our success at RHS Chelsea Flower Show last year, we will be presenting our entries for Plant of the Year 2019 on the Behind the Genes garden.
These are:

clematis kokonoe
Clematis 'Kokonoe' - Uniquely changing flower shape; flowers open as single blooms and develop into flamboyant doubles.
buddleja butterfly towers
Buddleja 'Butterfly Towers' - Grows up, rather than out, so it suits even the smallest garden without taking over. Thrives in containers; long-lasting; makes a great flowering hedge.
nepeta neptune
Nepeta 'Neptune' - Abundant flowers 'rebloom' on a compact, bushy habit; firm foliage is perfect for making tea.
osteospermum purple sun
Osteospermum 'Purple Sun' - Previously unseen colour combination of orange and pink. The pink-purple centre spreads outwards as the season progresses.
ajuga princess nadia
Ajuga 'Princess Nadia' - Brings together the best evergreen, variegated foliage and flower spikes of the genus. Year-round interest.
chlorophytum starlight
Chlorophytum 'Starlight' - Hardy Spider Plant with the architectural appeal of an ornamental grass and the flowering performance of a bedding plant. Attractive variegated foliage and pretty white flowers.
agapthus fireworks
Agapanthus 'Fireworks' - The best bicolour agapanthus, offering bigger blooms, better colour and more stems per plant than previous bicolour cultivars.
clematis little lemons
Clematis 'Little Lemons' - Very unusual long-flowering, dwarf clematis. Excellent in pots and hanging baskets.

Lance Russell

The Face

Focus this year is also on Thompson & Morgan's trainee manager, Lance Russell, (head shot) who as an alumni of Sparsholt College and now working at the forefront of the gardening industry is the epitome of the new generation of inspiring and social media-savvy young gardeners. Lance can be seen in Thompson & Morgan's video 'Journey to Chelsea'.

The Future

What do YOU think should be the plant breeding targets for the future? Where should we go next? We'd love to know what your top three breeding priorities are. Pest resistance? Eco friendliness? Please tell us!

CLICK HERE to make your selection and to be in with a chance to win a £100 Thompson & Morgan voucher.


For the chance to be featured, share your plant pictures with us
on Instagram by using the hashtag #YourTMGarden

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