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Visit to Hyde Park Nursery

Visit to Hyde Park Nursery

Hyde Park Nursery

Tucked away and hidden in the centre of Hyde Park the nursery covers several acres and is not open to the public. At the time of the visit, in May 2016, the nurseries were packed with flowers all ready to go out to central London Royal Parks and other locations such as Buckingham Palace, Windsor Castle and 10 Downing Street. Mike Jones, the nursery manager, took about 20 Friends around the nursery and enlightened us with how the plants are grown and managed as well as providing us with the history of the nursery.

Mike Jones, Nursery Manager, explains how the nursery is run

The nursery dates from the 1960s and is soon to be dismantled and replaced with a new modern nursery with up-to-date technology and a layout that will increase the space for plants by 25%. The current building, although nostalgic, is at the end of its life and being made of aluminium the bolts that keep the structure in place are now failing. Prior to the nursery it was a gravel pit and during the war was used as a piggery.

Mike explained that each year the Royal Parks provide the nursery with a bedding design which dictates the plants grown in the nursery. We saw over 2,000 geraniums destined for Buckingham Palace, which had been categorised into 4ft, 3ft and 2ft so that they could be planted in a graduated way. The whole nursery was packed with plants in readiness for delivery to the Royal Parks in two weeks’ time.

Geraniums for Buckingham Palace

The tour was concluded with a lovely glass of chilled white wine and nibbles, including some asparagus (first of the Kent season!). A thoroughly enjoyable event!