Hillier Nurseries has revealed details of the five new plants the company was going to unveil at this year’s RHS Chelsea Flower Show.
Although the RHS took the difficult but necessary decision to cancel the show, following the outbreak of COVID-19, Hillier hopes to still bring these new amazing new plants to the public this year, offering inspiration for every garden. All plants will be available from Hillier Garden Centres from May this year. The five plants are Lysimachia christianiae ‘Sunburst’, Salvia x jamensis Vibe™ Ignition – Purple, Leycesteria formosa ‘Little Lanterns’, Pittosporum tenuifolium ‘Bannow Bay’ and Hydrangea x multiflora ‘French Bolero’.
A particularly special one of the new plants is Lysimachia christianiae ‘Sunburst.’ It has been developed by Hillier Nurseries from a plant originally grown by famed plantsman Roy Lancaster, who has a special association with the company, having worked under Sir Harold Hillier for many years and helped collate the original Hillier Manual of Trees and Shrubs. L. ‘Sunburst’ is a trailing perennial that can grow over 1.5 metres in a season. It has dark green foliage, and in early summer produces a stunning mass of vibrant golden yellow flowers for four to six weeks.
The new Salvia x jamensis Vibe™ Ignition - Purple boasts exceptionally bright flower colour, richly aromatic foliage, and a long flowering season. S. ‘Vibe Ignition’ is a fantastic plant for a sunny spot in the garden. It is drought tolerant and very easy to grow so is perfect for gardeners and gardens of all varieties.
Leycesteria formosa ‘Little Lanterns’ is perfect for the smaller garden. In spring it offers lime-coloured growth and red shoots, in mid-summer bright golden yellow foliage and pendant racemes of white flowers then in autumn deep purple, almost black, ornamental berries. It was bred and selected by Hillier Head of Wholesale Nurseries, Charles Carr.
Pittosporum tenuifolium ‘Bannow Bay’ is ideal for patio containers and continues the Hillier ethos that everyone should be able to create a piece of a Chelsea exhibit in their garden. It grows to form a dense mound of deep purple foliage, tinged pink, in the winter months and is pale green with flashes of white in spring.
The final Hillier plant introduction is Hydrangea x multiflora ‘French Bolero’. This is a truly distinctive plant that boasts masses of blue or pink flowers, dependent on the soil type. Thanks to its unique habit, every bud, including all the side shoots will produce flowers.
Discussing the new varieties, Charles Carr, who has overseen the breeding commented: “We are all of course disappointed that Chelsea Flower Show won’t be going ahead this year, but that needn’t mean that people aren’t able to enjoy our new plants. Our fantastic growing team on our nurseries have been tending to them for months, keeping it all top secret. We have been very excited about unveiling them, particularly as we have so many this year and we look forward to hearing what people have to say about them.”