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Wisley Gardens

Get set to grow at RHS Garden Wisley’s Family Gardening Festival

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Fun-packed event runs from 26 May to 3 June

To celebrate the start of the warmer months, the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) Garden Wisley is hosting a fun-packed Family Gardening Festival, from 26 May to 3 June 2018.

Running during May half-term, the family event has a ‘Get Set, Grow!’ theme, with a wide variety of activities taking place throughout the week. Kids can get hands-on with garden themed activities and crafts, such as sow and grow workshops, potato and spoon races, face painting, and tree climbing. There will also be puppet shows, storytelling sessions, a ‘Vegetable Olympics’ and a ‘Mole Hill’ area with pedal-powered tractors. Additionally, fascinating Birds of Prey demonstrations will take place on Seven Acres at 11am and 2pm on Saturday 26 and Sunday 27 May.

As visitors walk around the Festival and take in the horticultural highlights of the season, they can gain expert advice from the RHS Science Team. Exhibitors include the National Vegetable Society and Surrey Bees, who will provide honey tastings, bee-themed activities and have a variety of wax products for sale.

While at the Family Gardening Festival, families can go on a garden adventure trail, sponsored by Honda, to look for the hidden Miimos - Honda’s clever robotic lawnmowers – along the way.

Take a break to refuel during the Festival with a tasty bite to eat, including ice cream and barbequed treats. There is also plenty of room to enjoy a family picnic in the great outdoors.

Normal garden entry applies; events and activities are suitable for all the family. For further information and to view the daily programme of activities, visit www.rhs.org.uk/gardens/wisley.

RHS Garden Wisley

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Hosts Surrey Sculpture Society Trail

22 August – 27 September 2015

RHS Garden Wisley welcomes the Surrey Sculpture Society into its beautiful grounds for the annual Surrey Sculpture Society Trail. This event brings together unique art works created by some of the most renowned artists, both established and emerging, from the South East.

The sculpture trail will open to the public on 22 August and run until 27 September 2015. Visitors to RHS Garden Wisley will discover a wide range of sculptures located throughout the grounds. The sculptures are made in stone, metal, bronze, resin, glass, ceramic, wood and found objects, and will be available to buy for a range of prices.

Teresa Martin, Surrey Sculpture Society’s exhibition manager for the event, said: “The Sculpture Trail at the RHS Garden Wisley in 2015 will echo some of the surreal aspects of the Alice in Wonderland garden with a diminutive ceramic merchant’s house and highly magnified plant forms on the Rock Garden that play with your sense of scale. There are intriguing and enchanting modelled forms cast with durable metal resins and some glorious celebratory shapes carved in stone, while the glass sculptures are stunning this year. The sad and the joyful aspects of our world are touched on by the artists, and some will definitely make visitors smile as they wander through the trail and find another piece round a corner in these magnificent gardens.”

Stephanie Fudge, Head of RHS Garden Wisley, said, “The Surrey Sculpture Trail at RHS Garden Wisley is an extremely popular event. The art is so beautifully presented and visitors can enjoy the garden setting at its best with the Mixed Borders in full flower. We enjoy seeing the sculptures change each year, and we love working with the Surrey Sculpture Society.”

Enjoy the delights of the trail when you visit for the floral extravaganza of the late-summer RHS Wisley Flower Show, 8 – 13 September, and the creative inspiration from spectacular colour of the the spectacular colour of the varied late-summer plantings throughout the garden.

Normal garden entry applies. For more information visit www.rhs.org.uk

RHS Garden Wisley

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Summer Adventures in Wonderland at RHS Garden Wisley 22 July – 31 August 2015.

Don’t be late for a jam-packed summer of Adventures in Wonderland at Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) Garden Wisley, Surrey. Join the celebration of the 150th anniversary of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland with free family activities every day.

In the same year that plantsman and former President of the RHS Edward Augustus Bowles was born, Lewis Carroll created the nonsensical and magical world of Wonderland. EA Bowles, too, harboured a passion for the weird and wonderful, and famously had an area in his garden devoted to his botanical curiosities. Bowles’ Corner at RHS Garden Wisley pays homage to this great plantsman with a selection of ‘interesting’ woodland plants.

This summer, discover a world of wonder at Wisley inspired by the logic-twisting tale of Lewis Carroll, sponsored by Witan Investment Trust. Enjoy horticultural highlights come rain or shine, outstanding mixed borders, fragrant rose gardens and sensational panoramas creating a feast for the senses. You’ll be welcomed to Wonderland with an Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland Top Terrace bedding scheme. Admire the wacky and wonderful design. Clashing colours and the White Rabbit lead you from reality to Wonderland, where you’ll find a 3-D sculpture of a caterpillar relaxing on a mushroom. This design was created by Wisley second-year horticulture Diploma students.

Explore, cook, play and plant your way to the perfect summer with gardening-inspired activities for all ages. Free activities include gardening, arts and crafts, music, theatre and puppet shows. Have an ‘un-birthday’ with a session of Eat Me, Drink Me cookery, or face painting on Tuesdays (payable and bookable in advance).

Follow the clues for curiouser and curiouser encounters throughout the garden with the Mad Hatter and the March Hare, the Caterpillar and the Cheshire Cat – and, of course, Alice herself. Discover the many bronze sculptures by the renowned Robert James Workshop around the garden. Take on the adventure, explore down the rabbit-hole willow tunnels, play flamingo croquet… you’ll be grinning like a Cheshire Cat this summer at Wisley.

2015 is the Year of the Sunflower, and this summer you’ll spot lots of them around the garden. From single blooms to multi-headed, toddler-sized to several metres tall, sunflowers are diverse. The giant flowers will be just like being in Wonderland. All over Europe many gardens as well as trials gardens will be celebrating the wide variation and uses of sunflowers. At RHS Garden Wisley you’ll see dwarf sunflowers in containers, agricultural, border and cut sunflowers for an RHS Award of Garden Merit trial. Be sure to vote for your favourite in the RHS People’s Choice during the summer months.

Eat the Queen of Hearts’ jam tarts at the Mad Hatter’s Tea Party Picnic
Join Alice and her friends for fun and entertainment at the Mad Hatter’s Tea Party Picnic. Wear your most creative hat and gather your friends! Pick up a picnic including your jam tart. Seating is limited: pre-booking and pre-payment will be required. For more information visit www.rhs.org.uk. Normal garden admission applies.

Bring your family along for a full day of fun every day of the holidays. Activities each day, some bookable in advance, visit www.rhs.org.uk for what’s on when.