Orchard Dene Nurseries

Clients and friends often ask me where I get my plants from.  No doubt this is because they would like to find a nursery that provides a wide range of excellent quality plants they can pop into everytime they see something interesting they fancy for their gardens.

Orchard Dene Nurseries, Helenium Fata Morgana

Sadly, for them anyway, the answer is Orchard Dene Nurseries near Henley.  Sadly for them because this is a wholesale nursery only.  Orchard Dene was set up in 1986 by Chris and Toby Marchant.  They specialise in hardy perennials, ferns and grasses, supplying around 1,400 varieties.

Orchard Dene Nurseries

Almost everything is propagated and grown by them in Henley.  This means they know their plants intimately, how they will perform in given conditions and what they will look good with.  A visit to their stockbeds, like the ones above, often provide inspiration for visiting garden designers.

Orchard Dene Nurseries, Cleve West, Chelsea Flower Show 2012  

The quality of Orchard Denes plants is legendary.  The nursery has supplied and planted the last two Best in Show gardens at the Chelsea Flower Show for Cleve West.  Many of their plants are supplied in 9cm pots as well as the more common 2 litre pots.  The 9cm pots are excellent value for money, raring to go and have usually caught up with larger plants by the end of their first season.

Orchard Dene Nurseries, Achillea Gold Plate

Orchard Dene is almost organic with chemical pest and weed control kept to an absolute minimum.  They are able to do this by keeping the site pretty spotless and plant hygeine is a high priority for them.  Whilst the nursery is totally peat-free, despite lots of experimentation at the nursery, the days of recyclable and/or biodegradable plant pots are a way off yet.  No doubt when that day arrives Orchard Dene will be leading the way.

Orchard Dene Nurseries, Salvia x sylvestris Dear Anja

Chris is a garden designer in her own right and also speaks on the subject of planting and plant design.  During 2012 she is writing a column for Gardens Illustrated on her favourite plants and occasionally lectures at garden design events and colleges.  Toby is responsible for plant production and manages a small but dedicated team in Henley.  Their own garden is no cobblers child having featured in Gardens Illustrated a few years ago.

They are always on the look-out for new cultivars to produce and the publication of their annual catalgue is an event in itself.  Now, if only they did shrubs, and trees, and bulbs....