Year ends on golden high

John Foley and Kate Lawson, of Holden Clough Nursery
John Foley and Kate Lawson, of Holden Clough Nursery
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Holden Clough Nursery has ended the season on a high by winning the gold medal at the prestigious Harrogate Autumn Flower Show.

The Ribble Valley nursery, run by John Foley and his partner Kate Lawson, put on a vibrant display of Autumn flowering shrubs and perennials at the show, particularly focussing on their large collection of crocosmia, displaying around 30 different types!

Also featured were Asters, Lobelia, Rudbeckia and much more! The judges’ comment about the overall impact of the stand was simply “Wow!”.

John Foley, who earlier this year became the first ever BBC Young Gardener of the Year, expleined: “With the weather being against growing plants this year the nursery’s display plants were not enough in flower, so we had to resort to using sale plants in the display, which still gave the overall high quality effect.”

The Harrogate show lasted three days and was the final fixture in the nursery’s busy diary for this year.

John added: “After having such a challenging year, to come away with so many medals overall has been terrific. The only thing is it sets the bar just as high for next year!”

The nursery plans to attend the same shows next year, starting with the Great Yorkshire Show, which was cancelled after just one day this year to waterlogged ground conditions. Also at the nursery the new tea room and lecture room are still on schedule for completion next spring and the planting around the new car park is establishing nicely along with the roundabout at the end of Chatburn Road, which is sponsered by the nursery. It has generated great feedback after looking dull for several years, and will look even better next year with plans to increase the amount of bedding plants to give longer-lasting colour earlier in the year.

l See The Vally in this edition for John Foley’s fortnightly gardening page, including a photo of the nursery’s award-winning display at Harrogate