For some of us plants are always on our minds, for others they really come into focus around now, when Spring is revving up and the incredible beauty of flower colour and form comes to the forefront. Apart from just getting out into nature, which is the number one practice for those of us that find our muses there, Plant Curator offers its top 5 plant happenings in April (mostly UK based – sorry international readers).
1. Ursula von Rydingsvard exhibition at Yorkshire Sculpture Park
Plant Curator unsurprisingly loves plants, green spaces and art. Yorkshire Scupture Park does all three really well and tomorrow sees the start of the Ursula von Rydingsvard exhibition. The first large-scale exhibition of her work in Europe and her biggest to date. It includes over 40 works from drawings to enormous sculptures (like our featured post image and the one below). She works with cedar, so plants not only surround her sculptures here, but also form them.
2. Kent’s very own Hanami
Plant Curator’s favourite county in England is hosting its very own Hanami. England is not known for practicing this Japanese borrowed activity of communally viewing and appreciating cherry blossom, although surely we do it, we just don’t have one word for it. What it is though, is a nice reminder to consciously practice appreciation for plants and so it’s great to see Kent having a go. Especially because it’s based at Brogdale, which in their own words is the ‘living gene bank of over 4,000 varieties of apples, pears, plums, cherries, cobnuts, currants and quinces and the Biggest & Best collection of fruit trees in the world!’. We believe them too. They do very good work down there, so it’s good to support them by getting with the Hanami spirit.
3. Last chance to see The Sunflowers
Rare, rare opportunity to see these plant superstars together. Go now before it’s too late!
4. RHS London Alpine Garden Show (April 27)
Some people love Chelsea, OK a lot of people love Chelsea. Plant Curator last year found it rather, well… crowded and wished it had been two foot taller (not that Plant Curator is particularly short either). It is the biggest horticultural sensorama extravaganza to be had in Britain and maybe the world, but small is beautiful too. The show Plant Curator is more excited by this year, is this new one-day event by the inimitable Royal Horticultural Society. Alpine plants really are charming, especially if you see them up mountains, but when in England, in this altitudinally challenged country, this is the next best thing. Plant Curator hopes for a good showing from the plant family Gentianaceae.
Phlox ‘Petticoat’ Copyright: Jonathan Billinger [CC-BY-SA-2.0], via Wikimedia Commons
5. Liberty’s new collaboration with Nike
If you’re thinking this is a less soulful event than the other four you’d be wrong, because we are talking shoes, and athletic shoes at that. What this shows is just how relevant to fashion plants always are and how much they continually inspire top designers like those employed by these two retail powerhouses. For this new collection, they have used a number of plant-related designs with floral, Paisley (droplet-shaped vegetable motif) and foliage patterns. With Liberty’s emphasis on design history, they use archive prints and give us the backstory to the designs, designers and artistry involved. They are available to buy from April 7th.