A day dedicated to bringing plants into focus on Saturday 17 May, 10am – 4pm
Join our team of horticulturalists, plant experts and scientists from across the region for a garden day out with a difference.
The second Festival of Plants at the Cambridge University Botanic Garden brings together horticulture and science in a day devoted to all things plant, from propagation to pollination, from seed to shopping.
A range of events and exhibits timetabled throughout the day make full use of the Garden, which will be at its best mid-May:
• Pop-up Plant Science
Here some of the top plant scientists from the East of England will be talking about their research and demonstrating scientific experiments. Visitors will be able to extract plant pigments, discover petal patterning, find out about the plant power behind Moss FM, learn how plants grow round the bend and much more.
• Talking Plants
Expanded to run all day this year, visitors can drop in to the Talking Plants tent for bite-size science talks. This year's topics include the how and why of flower colour, getting your grass carbon fix, the most dangerous plant in the world, colour breaks in tulips, and introductions to some of the region's National Plant collections.
• Plant Promenade
The Garden’s majestic Main Walk will be transformed into a Plant Promenade of plant shopping stalls, which this year include the legendary Beth Chatto Nursery and RHS Chelsea regulars, Fernatix, alongside many other local boutique nurseries all offering beautiful and unusual plants for sale. Visitors can also bring their thorny gardening dilemmas to the Garden’s expert horticultural staff at Ask the Gardener and find out about the work of Plant Heritage and the Wildlife Trusts.
• Meet the Family
Discover plant diversity on the Garden’s unique Systematic Beds. Experts will be on hand to explain the key differences between plant families and invite visitors to pull apart some flowers and use the structures to determine which plants belong together and build a family tree.
• Tour table
Double the number of tours are available this year due to their popularity at last year’s event and will take in the collections and plants that are looking their best in mid-May, including the tree collection, the wildflowers, the Systematic Beds, bee plants, and an introduction to the Garden’s National Collections. Plus there’ll be rare opportunities to go behind-the-scenes to the reserve collections and to join a drop-in canopy tour of the tropical rainforests in the Glasshouse Range (morning only).
• Plant Lab
Families can try out UV torches on glow in the dark plants, smash up leaves to make dyes, find out how plants travel and much more in the new family-friendly Plant Lab.
So whether it’s getting advice on which plant goes where or how to home compost, discovering the inner workings of flowers, picking up some unusual plants for the garden, or simply having a fun day out with the family, there’ll be something for everyone at the Botanic Garden’s Festival of Plants.
Festival of Plants runs from 10am – 4pm on Saturday 17 May 2014. Admission is £4.50/£4.95 gift aid (£3.95/£4.30 concession) and accompanied children 16 and under are admitted free of charge. For further visitor information please call 01223 336265 or visit www.botanic.cam.ac.uk
Festival of Plants is generously supported by the Cambridge Partnership for Plant Science (CPPS) and the Sainsbury Laboratory Cambridge University.
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