This year's Open Weekend attracted over 5,000 visitors! Over the course of 2 days, visitors from across the country came to see the stunning flower and vegetable displays, many of which are new additions to the range and have never been seen by the public before. As well as all these new varieties, visitors also wandered through Thompson & Morgan's beautiful show gardens, met gardening experts, watched Flower Pouch™ planting demonstrations and found out more about the company.
Subscribers to The Times newspaper and BBC Gardeners' World magazine were invited to exclusive open days on Thursday 28th and Friday 29th July. Gardeners' World day saw Adam Pasco, editor of the magazine, taking part in a Q&A session, where visitors challenged him to solve their gardening problems.
Each year we ask customers to name their favourite flower in the trial grounds and this year's clear winner was Eschscholzia 'Peach Sorbet'. This stunning Californian poppy will be available to buy online and in the new Thompson & Morgan Seed Catalogue from September. The magnificent 'Flower Tower', covered with 1,250 begonias and standing 16 feet tall was an impressive sight.
Our team of experts was on hand to answer visitors' questions in the Technical Booth and, at the popular Open Weekend Q&A session, Howard Drury and Dr Steve Reynolds also gave advice on gardening problems experienced by our customers.
The plant auction proved to be as popular as ever, with visitors filling their (car) boots with beautiful flower pouches and tubs from around the trial grounds. Led around the grounds by Paul Hansord, Managing Director of Young Plants, visitors were able to bid on selected flower varieties and take home some real bargains. Seeds were on sale in the main marquee for those who wanted to stock up in preparation for the next season.
This year specialist growers from The Begonia Society, The Alpine Society and the British Fuchsia Society were here to answer queries and talk to visitors about their societies. Expert grower and exhibitor Arthur Davies' giant vegetable display was as popular as ever. Greenthumb, the lawnsmen who keep our lawns looking green and lush were on site to give advice and sell their products. Our chosen charity, the East Anglian Children’s Hospice (EACH) was also present and we raised over £2,000 for them at Open Weekend to help build a garden at a local hospice.
All in all it was a great weekend and we're already thinking about the next one! Thank to everyone who visited Thompson & Morgan, we hope to see you again next year.