Bloomin’ marvellous as NEC stages BBC Gardeners’ World Live

Joe Swift Carol Klein and Monty Don

Gardening fans will be indulging their passion at the NEC this weekend.

The venue is staging the BBC Gardeners’ World Live event, which takes on added significance this year because it coincides with the 50th anniversary of the BBC Two show.

Headed by current presenters Monty Don, Carol Klein and Joe Swift – along with Alan Titchmarsh – this year’s show will feature 50th anniversary celebrations and special entertainment for the whole family.

As well as live music each day, there will be a vintage tea tent, face painting, bird feeder making and Father’s Day card workshops, craft sessions, picnics, street food, Pimm’s, fizz, plus a very special spiced beetroot birthday cake, recipe created by Great British Bake Off winner, Nadiya Hussain.

As part of their celebrations, the Gardeners’ World presenters have been calling on fans to vote for the plant which has had the biggest impact on gardens over the past 50 years, with the winner being officially crowned the ‘Golden Jubilee Plant’.

The nominated plants will be on display in a beautiful and inspiring gallery curated by BBC Gardeners’ World Magazine associate editor, David Hurrion. The ‘Golden Jubilee Plant’ winner will then be unveiled on this evening’s one hour anniversary special by Mary Berry.

Birmingham City Council will be recreating its acclaimed exhibits from this year’s RHS Chelsea Flower Show, and more floral tributes include a three-tier birthday cake made entirely from peonies, plus a garden party scene of British cut flowers and table set for the Gardeners’ World presenters.

There will also be Show Gardens from Wyevale Garden Centres, Tesco, and the Multiple Sclerosis Society, plus five APL Avenue Show Gardens, twelve Beautiful Borders and Paul Stone’s Nostalgia Garden – a vintage village scene from 1967 complete with a babbling brook and garden centre featuring an original Flymo and seed packets from this milestone year.

The Anniversary Garden: A Brief History of Modern Gardens has been created especially for the occasion by Professor David Stevens and Peter Dowle. The Anniversary Garden will take visitors on a journey through gardening over the past half a century, from the crazy paving of the 1970s to today’s naturalistic planting.

Ticket holders to the event will also get free access to the BBC Good Food Show.