Gardeners with the golden touch at Mini Chelsea Fringe

Wendy and Ray Bates ( Rotherview Nursery proprietors) with their award-winning troughs. SUS-170905-121351001
Wendy and Ray Bates ( Rotherview Nursery proprietors) with their award-winning troughs. SUS-170905-121351001

Royal Horticultural Show Gold and Silver medal winners, Ray and Wendy Bates from Rother View Nursery, are set to share the secrets of their success when they attend the upcoming Mini Chelsea Fringe at Alexandra Park, Hastings, later this month.

Ray and Wendy, who will celebrate 30 years in the business next year, will have a stall at the Mini Chelsea Fringe hosted by the Alexandra Park Greenhouse Group (APGG) in Alexandra park on Sunday, May 28.

The green fingered couple won a Gold Medal at last year’s Royal Horticultural Show (RHS) Chelsea for a planted alpine trough display with crevice planting.

This year they have already won two Silver Gilt Medals at the RHS Early Spring and Late Spring shows and will be exhibiting at other shows, including RHS Chelsea, May 22-27.

Wendy says its been a good start to the year: “We are really pleased,” she said. “Early shows are not easy because it’s hard to put colour into the displays.”

Ray and Wendy have run their nursery on its current site at Ivy House Lane, Three Oaks, for 18 years and advise novice and experienced gardeners about what to buy. She says its all about trowel and error. “People can get the advice here. We can help customers pick what they want for their gardens, large or small.

“We grow all our own stock and, because we grow them, we know all about them. We have 30 years of knowledge.”

Alexandra park’s Mini Chelsea on May 28, a festival of flowers, gardens and gardening, will be part of the sixth international Chelsea Fringe, May 20-June 4.

Nurseries and community groups will set up stalls in two marquees near the Eat@the Park Cafe between 11-4.30pm. Marquee entry will be free.

Attractions include plant sales, music, a guided walk, rides on the park’s miniature railway and cream teas in the cafe.

For further information visit: www.greenhousealexpark.com or www.chelseafringe.com