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BBC Gardeners' World Live at Birmingham NEC - Preview

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by Andy Coleman (subscribe)
I'm a freelance writer living in Birmingham. I like Classic Rock, 70s pop music, football and interviewing celebrities. Follow me on Twitter: @andycoleman9
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A blooming great day out
After the excitement of this year's Chelsea Flower Show attention turns to England's next big horticultural event, BBC Gardeners' World Live.

BBC Gardeners' World Live, Birmingham NEC

The show is at Birmingham NEC from June 16 till June 19, 2016.
As at Chelsea, the show gardens will be a highlight, with designers working flat out to meet the deadline to ensure their creations are at their peak at the show opening.

BBC Gardeners' World Live, Birmingham NEC
2015 winners: Neil Sutcliffe, Lucinda Parish, Kareena Gardiner

The 2016 exhibits include Paul Stone's The Canal Boat Garden, a celebration of the Midlands' 100 miles of canals which includes an inspiring lock side scene complete with a full size narrow boat. The display includes a Lock Keepers cultivated garden and a "moving roof garden" on the narrow boat itself, to inspire those wanting to grow flowers and edibles in a small space.

Another show garden to look forward to is Alexandra Froggatt's Capability Brown's Enchanted Tea Party. Inspired by the garden buildings often found in the landscapes of Capability Brown and the English tradition for high tea, visitors can enter the summerhouse to walk into an enchanted and fragrant rose lover's dream.

BBC Gardeners' World Live, Birmingham NEC
Best in Show 2015: Neil Sutcliffe in his prize-winning Gardeners' World Live show garden

Health For Life Urban Community Garden, designed by Owen Morgan, celebrates the use of community gardening as a device to engage with wider social issues and encourages groups, primary and secondary schools to grow their own vegetables, fruits and herbs.

A collection of five gardens form the Association of Professional Landscapers' Avenue, offering ideas of what can be achieved in a small space for garden entertaining, attracting wildlife, outdoor cooking and keeping the youngsters entertained.

The Beautiful Borders section will also inspire visitors to sow and grow in small spaces. At just a few square metres each, these gardens really pack a punch with their planting combinations. Each of the nine exhibits have a literary theme, many commemorating significant anniversaries in 2016, including Shakespeare, Roald Dhal and Rudyard Kipling.

For Grow Your Own enthusiasts, The Allotment Garden, designed by Jon Wheatley, is a replica of a working allotment packed with vegetables, fruit and herbs. Experts will also share hints and tips on the new VegTrug Stage which will host talks on ways to make even the tiniest plot productive and tasty.

BBC Gardeners' World Live, Birmingham NEC
Beautiful blooms: The floral marquee at 2014's show

In the BBC Gardeners' World Live Theatre the likes of Monty Don, Alan Titchmarsh, Carol Klein and Joe Swift will offer growing advice, while in the Floral Marquee there will be a Rose Festival with specialist rose growers coming together to create floral displays and give advice on the best way to get beautiful blooms.

So if you want gardening ideas, insight and inspiration Birmingham NEC is the place to be.

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Why? Gardening heaven for those with greenfingers
When: June 16 - 19, 2016
Phone: 0844 581 1340
Where: National Exhibition Centre, Birmingham
Cost: From 22.50 plus fees (price includes free entry to BBC Good Food Show)
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