free hit counter code Red-jacket army pensioners get Chelsea rose named after them – with £5 off for Sun readers –

Red-jacket army pensioners get Chelsea rose named after them – with £5 off for Sun readers

ALL eyes in the horticultural world will be turning to Chelsea this week, as the famous Flower Show kicks off in style. 

Watch closely, and you’ll see flashes of bright pillarbox red amongst the gorgeous show gardens – the jackets of the proud Chelsea Pensioners. 


Chelsea pensioners with Dame Judy Dench[/caption]

Some 300 retired army veterans live at the Royal Hospital Chelsea, and the flower show has been on their land since 1913.

Last year, eight pensioners lunched every day at Mark Gregory’s walled ‘Pot to Plate’ kitchen garden – at one point interrupted by the Princess of Wales.

In 2005, a garden was created in their honour – a mix of all the things the old soldiers missed about England when away at war. Designed by Julian Dowle, it went on to win best in show. 

Now they’ve had a rose named after them – launched this week.  

Helena Pettit, RHS Director of Shows, Commercial and Innovation, said: “It’s wonderful to see the iconic red suits of the Chelsea Pensioners – it’s a sign that the world’s greatest flower show is about to take place.

“They are as much a part of the RHS Chelsea Flower Show as the trees, plants and gardens themselves, and we are delighted to be able to recognise their huge contribution with a starring role.”

Phil Harkness, from Harkness Roses, told Sun Gardening: “Every year we see tens of thousands of new and unique roses, most are destined to fail. Just sometimes we see the first flower on a new seedling plant and we stand back in awe and admire it. 

“The Chelsea Pensioner rose was one such rare example. With a bushy plant growing to around 90 cms tall, a perfume that lingers, and an almost 10cm bloom – it’s rich red and  radiant.”

Chelsea Pensioner, Patrick 87 said: “When you see the rose fully out, to me, it’s the most beautiful thing in the world. It’s  great for the Royal Hospital Chelsea to have our own rose.”

Ric, Head of Grounds at Royal Hospital Chelsea, said: ‘It’s exactly the right colour! It’s fantastic and it’s really exciting we’ve developed the Chelsea Pensioner rose with Harkness Roses.”

For every  £29.99 rose sold, Harkness will donate  £2.50 to the Chelsea Pensioners. 

They are also offering  £5 off and a free 100g rose fertiliser, if you order using the code CHELS101. Visit or call 0844 502 0014.


The Chelsea Pensioner rose by Harkness Roses[/caption]


MANY of the show gardens at this year’s Chelsea have only been able to happen thanks to Project Giving Back.

A grant-making charity set up in lockdown – it gives UK-based charities and other charitable organisations the chance to apply for a fully-funded garden at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show – which in turn massively raises awareness of that charity’s work. 

This year it will support 15 gardens, including seven show gardens and two sanctuary gardens. All will live on after the show in permanent locations around the UK.

Muscular Dystrophy UK, the leading charity supporting more than 110,000 people living with one of over 60 muscle wasting and weakening conditions, is one such beneficiary of Project Giving Back.

Designed by the RHS ’Young Designer of the Year,’ Ula Maria, the ‘Muscular Dystrophy UK – Forest Bathing Garden’ will offer an accessible, immersive forest bathing experience to Muscular Dystrophy UK patients, their families, clinicians, and the wider community.

Forest bathing, otherwise known as Shinrin-yoku, is an ancient Japanese practice of spending time in the forest and soaking up its atmosphere through the senses.

The garden seeks to create a sheltered space for its visitors – to give comfort and clarity, reconnect with oneself and nature, or accommodate conversation with others.

After Chelsea, it will be relocated to the public garden space at the new Institute of Developmental & Regenerative Medicine at the University of Oxford.

There it will be a permanent place of refuge for Muscular Dystrophy patients during treatment and new trials, with access to the general
public also being made available.

The Muscular Dystrophy Forest Bathing garden

WIN #1

AS if Chelsea wasn’t enough to deal with Gardeners World Live at NEC Birmingham is gearing up for June  – and nine lucky readers will win a  pair of tickets to the Sunday June 16th – worth  £56 per pair. 

There will be Show Gardens galore, an International Orchid Show, your favourite experts on hand giving great advice, a floral marquee, houseplant hub and and a garden design drop in centre. 

The Beautiful Borders area – unique to Gardeners World Live, will be crammed full of take home ideas to help you make the most of your outside space. 

To enter and more details, visit or fill in this FORM

Or write to Sun Gardeners World Live! Summer competition, PO Box 3190, Colchester, Essex, CO2 8GP.

Include your name, age, email or phone. UK residents 18+ only. Ends 23.59GMT 1/06/24.


Gardeners World Live! at NEC Birmingham is a show for everyone[/caption]

WIN #2

If Chelsea’s inspired you – National Garden Gift Vouchers can be used to purchase thousands of gardening products across the UK – under a scheme run by the Horticultural Trades Association (HTA), a not-for-profit organisation.

And we’re giving one lucky reader a £250 voucher. 

The HTA re-invests its proceeds from the scheme in supporting gardening and gardening good causes. Whenever you give or spend one of our vouchers, you’re supporting this work.

National Garden Gift Vouchers can be spent in participating retailers across the UK. To find your nearest stores visit the store locator

To enter and more details, visit or fill in this FORM

Or write to Sun HTA  competition, PO Box 3190, Colchester, Essex, CO2 8GP.

Include your name, age, email or phone. UK residents 18+ only. Ends 23.59GMT 1/06/24.

The National Garden Gift voucher is a great present for your loved ones.


AS part of Robert Dyas Plant and Pause campaign -the Cloud Gardener – AKA Jason Williams – has  created a collection of videos on how to utilise your outdoor space to improve your mental health. Visit 


Jason Williams – AKA the Cloud Gardener – give his top tips for mental health[/caption]


Instead of buying plant labels – use lollysticks and a sharpie – the stick will eventually decompose into your soil.


Earth up your potatoes and start hardening off your tomato plants to get them ready for going into your beds/buckets and pots. 


Make sure you feed your tomatoes regularly for bountiful fruit.[/caption]


YouGarden are offering the Juicy Strawberry ‘Colossus’ on a Buy Six Get Six Free basis for a limited time only! Bumper Crops Year After Year. Sun readers can save £9.99 by quoting Offer Code SUN102 at


Q. Why is it that all my roses are covered in green fly as well as most of our new shrubs we planted end of last year. I’ve tried all sorts of sprays last summer but nothing gets rid of them. I’ve been told to try soapy water, have you heard of this ? Carol Weston, via email. 

A. Yes indeed! In fact ever since I was a child I’ve been out in the garden with a soapy water spray treating roses, blackfly, anything that the tomatoes were stuggling with.

Aphids overwinter on roses as eggs, which is why you keep seeing them. Use Ecover if you can, as its less toxic than other washing up liquids, – and then just mix a squirt in with cold water – fill an old spray bottle and  go to work. A very satisfying job. Good luck!! 


Use soapy water to get rid of flies on tomatoes[/caption]

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