11 Apr 2016

Students Set Sail for Spring Flower Show

Preparations are underway for a Viking-themed garden complete with 15ft fishing boat, stream, timber walkway, woodland and Viking hut created by students from Askham Bryan College in readiness for Harrogate’s Spring Flower Show. (Thursday 21 – Sunday 24 April)

ABC_Show_garden_1The 100m sq garden is the work of more than 40 students from the landscaping, horticulture, arboriculture and floristry courses at the York-based college and will compete in the professional category for show gardens. It is the largest garden the students have ever created.

The project follows recent success for the college’s Extended Diploma Level 3 horticulture students who last month were crowned the 2016 Young Gardeners of the Year at London's Ideal Home Show after taking both Best in Show and a Gold medal for a garden designed to inspire city dwellers.

For their Harrogate show garden, the students have created a traditional Nordic landscape with birch, pine, grass, moss and wild flowers leading down to the shore of an inlet.

Lecturer Mr Turner said: “It will be quite impressive. This is the biggest garden we have produced and the students have been so enthusiastic in both the creative and practical aspects, with the different courses working together.”

The students have created a Viking kot, or hut, using timber provided by the arboricultural team and featuring “double dagger” roofing tiles from pallet strips. Supporting timbers include Viking-themed carvings, such as wolf heads. Also included are Viking shields which have been designed by the floristry students and will highlight the garden’s sponsors, including Makita UK, Marshalls plc and Mires Beck Nursery.

Mr Turner added: “Planning and creating the garden is not only an important part of the students’ curriculum studies but it is also an invaluable showcase for their skills, which last year resulted in four students being offered jobs after the Harrogate show.”

The students will also take part in the show's “Horticulture on Trend” (HOT) initiative where each day different displays will be created with students' ideas of the next “big thing” in the gardening world, whether it's incorporating restful colours to encourage mindfulness or quirky designs to highlight up-cycling, there will be plenty to inspire.

The garden is being built at the college then it will be dismantled, taken to Harrogate, and re-created in readiness for the event. Rated Britain's top gardening evening by Which? Gardening, the Harrogate Spring Flower Show includes more than 100 plant nurseries, exhibitions of floristry and flower arranging as well as entertainment and shopping opportunities.

Photo shows Askham Bryan College students preparing their Viking-themed garden for the Harrogate Spring Flower Show which opens on Thursday 21 April. Left to right are horticulture students Ryan Lowe,  Ben Lee, Alicia Kemp and Aaron Brace.