‘Theatrical’ plans set out for Royal Horticultural Society garden at Wisley


A clear way forward for us to enhance RHS Garden Wisley’s reputation

RHS WisleyImage copyright RHS / Clive NicholsImage caption About a million people visit RHS Wisley every year, the society said.

A dramatic cherry walk and a garden of edible plants are among “embryonic” plans for the Royal Horticultural Society’s flagship garden in Surrey.

Landscape architect Christopher Bradley-Hole has unveiled initial plans to develop RHS Wisley in Surrey following an increase in visitors.

The Chelsea Flower Show winner said it would ensure Wisley remained England’s premiere centre for horticulture.

The society has four gardens in the UK, and is creating a fifth in Salford.

RHS Garden Wisley was the first of these to be created, in 1904.

Among the key “visions” for Wisley include a walk, possibly planted with flowering cherries, to act as “a spectacular welcome” to visitors, leading to a new reception building and courtyard.

A new science and learning centre will aim to address modern horticultural challenges and share its knowledge UK-wide.

The new science centreImage copyright Wilkinson Eyre / Bradley Hole Schoenaich LandscapeImage caption The new science centre will aim to become a centre of excellence in horticultural science

Three new gardens will be devoted to the science and benefits of horticulture:

  • a garden of Garden of Health and Wellbeing exhibiting medicinal plants

  • a World Kitchen Garden to show the pick of the planet’s vast menu of edible plants

  • a Nature Garden to explore the natural processes and cycles in gardens

RHS Director General Sue Biggs said the plans might evolve but set “a clear way forward for us to enhance RHS Garden Wisley’s reputation as one of the best, horticulturally-significant and most welcoming gardens in the world”.

Christopher Bradley-Hole added: “This is an opportunity to… create new features to ensure Wisley remains the nation’s premier centre for horticulture well into next century.”

RHS WisleyImage copyrightRHSImage captionThe work on RHS Wisley is part of a 10 year, £160m investment programme

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