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New Plant Awards at Britain's National Plant Show

Hebe 'Rhubarb and Custard' - Best in Show at the New Plant Awards. Image ©HTA
Britain’s National Plant Show took place last week and with it the New Plant Awards. This is a trade show, for growers and nurseries and garden centres rather than home gardeners, and few of the plants entered in the competition for the best new plant (over 100 of them) are yet available for home gardeners; but they will be soon. So I thought you might like a look.

The judges gave the award for the best new plant in the show to Hebe ‘Rhubarb and Custard' (above, click to enlarge) and David Gilchrist commented: “With such a huge selection of fantastic new plants across all categories the judges were spoilt for choice. Hebe ‘Rhubarb and Custard’ really stands out as an extremely saleable plant with a good shelf life that is easy to grow.  With its striking foliage and lilac flowers it has the ‘wow’ factor and within a plantarea will catch the eye of the gardening public presenting tremendous potential for garden retailers.”

The other Gold Medal winners were;
Annual: Impatiens ‘Sunpatiens Compact Red’ Leucanthemum x superbum 'Freak!' - Best perennial at New Plant Awards. Image ©HTA.
Herbaceous perennial: Leucanthemum x superbum ‘Freak’ (right, click to enlarge)
Climber: Hydrangea petiolaris ‘Summer Snow’
House plant: Kalanchoe Queen RoseFlowers ‘Candice’
Breeder Innovation: Begonia ‘Summerglory’ (below, click to enlarge)

The judges for the New Plant Award, sponsored by ProVar, were: Dan Heims of Terra Nova Nurseries in Portland, Oregon; Neil Fishlock of Dobbies Garden Centres (one of Britain’s largest chains); Anisa Gress, news editor of the RHS magazine The Garden, and horticulturalist and holder of the Plant heritage National Collection of Hamamelis Chris Lane. David Gilchrist, horticultural adviser to the Horticultural Trades Association, which organises the show, chaired the panel.

Begonia 'Summerglory' won the award for Breeder Innovation at the New Plant Awards. Image ©HTADuring the two day show, visitors are also asked to vote and they came up with a very different choice.

The Visitors’ Vote for Best in Show was Hydrangea macrophylla ‘Dark Angel’
Best AnnualPetunia 'Designer Purple Flash’
Best ShrubLavatera ‘Magenta Magic’
Best Herbaceous Perennial: Pennisetum setaceum ‘Vertigo’
Best Houseplant (joint winners): 
Paphiopedilum maudiae ‘Femma’ and Gerbera ’Flori Line Micro Sunrise’

Next year's National Plant Show takes place on 25 and 26 June 2013.