Power of plants

Round & About

RHS Wisley

Watch out for the Giant Houseplant Takeover at RHS Wisley 

A lost and abandoned Victorian house has been overrun by its only remaining inhabitants – the houseplants, and no it’s not the start to a Gothic novel, it’s just the latest exhibition at RHS Wisley.

Hundreds of houseplants will be growing, overflowing and taking over the Glasshouse at the flagship garden until 1st March.

Every room is filled with familiar plants in the Giant Houseplant Takeover where a parlour palm is growing out of an armchair, a giant fern is taking a bath and every cup and tea pot features a growth of greenery.

The aim of the exhibition is to inspire visitors to think about quirky and innovative ways to grow houseplants. You’ll wander around a house of six rooms, each featuring different houseplants that have ‘made themselves too much at home’.

Walk through spider plants, devil’s ivy and spiderwort in the hallway through to the living room where a banana plant is growing through the roof and a group if small palms are playing chess.

The mattress and curtains of the four-poster bed have become entwined with bromeliads and in the dining room, tall succulents and cacti are awaiting their Mad Hatter feast with cupcakes which look like Venus fly traps. The bathroom doesn’t escape either with a waterfall pouring through the ceiling  of ferns and moss.

There’s so much to see. General manager Emma Allen said they want to encourage people to be bolder with their houseplants and see that they don’t need to sit in a pot. She added: “We will keep them well fed and watered and can only hope they will leave our visitors in peace.”

The Giant Houseplant Takeover at the Glasshouse is open from 10am to 3.45pm daily until 1st March and is included in the normal admission price – and watch out as you wander round!

More info

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Wisley in October

Round & About

RHS Wisley

The glorious Wisley is always worth a visit whatever the time of year and this month is no exception.

They begin by celebrating the natural beauty of wood today and tomorrow (5th and 6th) with Woodfest, featuring artisan woodcraft demonstrations, tree listening, horse logging and tours of Wisley’s woodland at this event sponsored by Stihl.

Also on Sunday 6th  the Cyclamen Society holds its autumn show with some of the best plants grown by the most experienced cyclamen growers in the country; plant sales with both sought after forms not often found elsewhere and common forms at low prices, suitable for the beginner; experts on hand for advice.

The Garden is open from 9am – 6pm at weekends and these events are included in Garden admission.

Enjoy a Taste of Autumn with RHS Garden Wisley’s popular autumn celebration of harvest and local produce, from 16th - 20th October.

Celebrate the sights, sounds and tastes of the season with 30 exhibitors, featuring Surrey Bees and The National Vegetable Society, as well as many others, offering the opportunity to buy food and drink products. Plus enjoy delicious produce – including Wisley apple tastings, apple pressing and apple identification.

On Sunday 20th, they welcome the Conifer Society for their annual show which includes displays and talks about conifer care and use.

Find out about conifers for every size and aspect of garden as well as a show of cones and photographs.

The Garden is open from 9am – 6pm throughout Taste of Autumn, and these events are included in normal Garden admission.

Come and spend half term with Wisley from 26th October – 3rd November. Autumn is full of colour and they are celebrating this with nature’s colours in the foliage and in the insect world.

Join in the big draw event and meet the entomologists. They will also be welcoming the Birds of Prey to the garden over the weekend 26th and 27th . They will give agility displays at 11am and 2pm each day and will be on display on their perches between times.

Also starting on 26th October and running until 17th November, is an exciting new display in the Glasshouse:  Mexican Day of the Dead, where brightly coloured tropical plants mingle with skeletons.

The Glasshouse is open from 10am – 3.45pm daily. These events are included in normal Garden admission.

Find out more

For more information about any of these events

Great outdoors

Round & About

RHS Wisley

Celebrating 250 years of the circus, enjoy a weekend of cultural delights at RHS Garden Wisley’s ArtsFest event on 14th & 15th July.

Over the course of the weekend, visitors can soak up live music, magic workshops, dance and circus acts, as well as balloon modelling and living statues for this annual festival of the arts. It’s also the ideal time to enjoy the beautiful surroundings of the garden as summer is in full bloom and it’s free to RHS members.

Flavoursome Fridays will take place every Friday afternoon (1pm -3pm) between Friday, 6th July, and Friday, 31st August. Visitors can head along to taste a selection of seasonal fruit and vegetables grown in the Wisley garden, from strawberries, raspberries, redcurrants and blueberries, to cucumbers, tomatoes, sugar snaps and sweetcorn.  Be inspired to grow particular varieties at home and pick up some top tips on cultivation from the RHS team of experts who tend to Wisley’s fruit and vegetable gardens. Free garden entry to RHS members.

Between Saturday, 21st July and the beginning of September there’s Jurassic Discovery Summer Holiday Family Fun (free to RHS members). Take a step back in time and unearth the secrets of the land that time forgot with Jurassic plant habitats, giant insects and dinosaur footprints to discover. There are fun activities every day to keep budding adventurers busy throughout the entire summer holidays. View the daily programme of events on  the RHS Wisley website to plan your visit. 

Make the most of the warm summer evenings thanks to open-air screenings of film classics Pretty Woman (Friday, 13th July) and Back To The Future (Saturday, 14th July) in the garden after hours. Booking details can be found online.

Groups of eight or more are able to use the earlybird ticket price up until Thursday, 9th July.

Tickets are on sale from QUAD box office on 01332 290 606 or via the Summer Nights Film website at www.summernightsfilm.co.uk

Make the most of Wisley’s late-evening opening on Friday, 27th July to enjoy an evening stroll and experience the tranquillity of Wisley after hours. Last entry at 7pm, free to RHS members, special offer available for non-members.

Wisley, Woking, GU23 6QB. 

Visit www.rhs.org.uk/gardens/wisley