Garden Press Event February 2012

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On one if the coldest days yet so far, the garden media were invited to the RHS Halls in London to see some of the leading suppliers of plants, tools and merchandise which will be available for sale in 2012.

Over 70 companies were represented and many well known faces in the garden world were seen walking the aisles looking at new products and talking to suppliers. They included Joe Swift in association with Homebase showing his design for Chelsea, Pippa Greenwood, Mathew Wilson,Nigel Colbourne from the Daily mail and Peter Seabrook amongst others. Even Jamie Oliver was there- well not really just a giant picture of him next to his Wood Fired Ovens.

It is always hard at any show such as this to pick out items which stand out as you are distracted by meeting people you now but there were some notable new things on the market.

I was taken by the Cacoon from hand-in-out.com, a cross between a hammock and an enclosed swing. Made out of strong weather proof canvas it can be used in the garden or inside the home or even in the woods or by the sea. There is even a twin one which could be used in the grounds of a hotel perhaps. They come in a handy carry case and are so easy to assemble.

A really good environmental product by Environden features a curved roof to enjoy sedums on a new or existing building. A haven for wildlife which also provides insulation and is low maintenance is a good alternative to tiles or slate.

Plant Heritage, the leading cultivated plant conservation charity were highlighting some wonderful National Collections and the National Plant Collection Scheme. With over 650 National Plant collections in Britain, they have established a living plant library dedicated to specific genus. A wonderful legacy of genetic diversity which is invaluable to historians, gardeners, medical research and conservationists is undoubtedly a very worthy cause.

Brother are best known for large scale printers but they also make wonderful electronic label printers for individuals and professionals which even link to your laptop and you can alter the type face and size of print. It is so easy to forget plant names especially in the winter months when everything looks the same as it dies back but by using these easy to use labels machines in your own garden or business it makes life much simpler especially if you have a bad memory!

How about growing your own ladybirds? Agralan have launched a new product aimed at all ages as a natural way to control aphids with a rearing box for the larvae, an order card to send off for the eggs and food with complete instructions.

A new website called Plantify is planning to make garden design more accessible to the public with an extensive plant finder database.

Bosch launched a mini cordless Keo garden saw which can be used with one hand which fills the gap between secateurs and chainsaws.

Greentree products have a unique range of pop up cloches along with other innovative items which are all reasonably priced and are stored easily once folded.

And lastly what about a new bird food to deter Squirrels with the apt name, Squirrel Ban which contains ChillimegaO a unique formula with added vitamins for birds but chilli which our little furry bushy tailed friends apparently don’t like!

This will be the last Garden Press event held at the RHS Halls in Vincent Square before the move to Islington next year. If it’s this cold next February I had better get my skis ready as it’s a long long way!