On a sunny, warm first weekend in June we visited Gardening Scotland 2016.
Held at the Royal Highland Centre in Edinburgh, this show is often a go to place for gardeners in the north of England because we know the plants will thrive in our similar climate.
This year we took the train, only an hour to Edinburgh and straight from Haymarket station onto a bus specially scheduled for the event.
The No.98 bus operated by Lothian Buses ran every 15 minutes and it took us directly into the grounds of the Royal Highland Centre. Nothing could have been easier!
By the time we arrived at about 10.00am, the site was already busy.
As usual, many enjoyed the small pallet gardens featuring designs from local schools, nurseries and clubs.
Exhibitors in the main hall created fantastic displays which included; Mecanopsis, Primulas and diminutive Lilies. A miniature fairy village, rich in detail was achieving favourable comments.
There was plenty to keep the visitor entertained, from bee keeping demonstrations to wood turning and cookery.
It did appear that people were being guarded with their spending, as a great number of visitors were leaving site with only one or two purchases, in fact when we boarded the shuttle bus to the train station, only about 15 percent of the passengers had bags with plants and garden related goodies.
Some of the vendors we expected to see at the show were also absent. Our shopping list remained unfulfilled as greenhouse shelves, irrigation systems and rose growers eluded us.
The show is a great day out but the focus of the event now seems to be on outdoor lifestyle rather than the act of gardening itself.
To find our more about the show and the awards for 2016, visit the Gardening Scotland website.