Kirsty Wright

Kirsty is developing Plant Reception capability across all RHS Gardens in order to help prevent pests and diseases entering our gardens on incoming plant material. She advises curatorial teams about the risks associated with different plants and promotes best practice in RHS procurement and handling of new plants

What do you do?

I support the RHS Plant Health Guiding Principles by developing Plant Reception capability across all RHS Gardens. I am setting minimum standards for our Reception facilities and developing operational standards for how the Reception facilities function. I risk assess incoming plant material and provide diagnosis and advice where problems are found on plants in Reception or Gardens.

I also provide pathology advice to members via the RHS Gardening Advice Service, and Plant Health training to both RHS staff and members.

“I am helping to keep the RHS Gardens free from potentially devastating pests and diseases.”

Why is your team’s research important?

As the Biosecurity arm of the Plant Health team, we focus specifically on the plant health of the five RHS Gardens. We ensure that RHS Garden practices and activities comply with current UK plant health legislation and RHS Plant Health Policies to prevent damaging pests and diseases from being introduced into the gardens. We also undertake monitoring and surveillance of pests and diseases and provide a diagnostic and advisory service to the garden teams if problems arise.

Projects I’m working on now

  • Working with RHS Garden Harlow Carr to achieve Plant Healthy certification
  • Developing a Plant Reception Unit policy manual


  • Raising the profile of RHS plant reception with RHS Gardens.
  • Development of risk assessment methods for plant reception.
  • Improving garden monitoring and advisory service for northern gardens.

Get involved

The Royal Horticultural Society is the UK’s leading gardening charity. We aim to enrich everyone’s life through plants, and make the UK a greener and more beautiful place.