RHS Master Grower: Chrysanthemums Direct

Discover the story behind Tatton Park's 2019 Master Grower

Behind the scenes at Chrysanthemums DirectChrysanthemums Direct is (as its name suggests) a specialist in all things chrysanthemum and was RHS Flower Show Tatton Park's Master Grower for 2019.
The nursery is based in Knutsford, Cheshire, and grows more than 420 cultivars of chrysanthemum for gardens and exhibitions, with specialities including Incurved, Spray, Anemone and Reflexed chrysanthemum.

What’s the story of Chrysanthemums Direct?

Chrysanthemums Direct is owned by its parent company, RF Lawrence & Sons. RF Lawrence & Sons was founded in 1958, initially starting life as a council-owned, two-acre smallholding and selling flowers locally.
The nursery built on its success over the years and is now privately owned, spanning an impressive 35 acres and producing 1.25 million cut flowers each year for major national retailers that include Marks & Spencer.
It wasn’t until 2008 that RF Lawrence & Sons found a gap in the market to sell young chrysanthemum plants to the public and Chrysanthemums Direct was born.
“I’d worked on the flower-show circuit for 30 years and saw exhibits of chrysanthemums where people were asking for plants, but no-one was selling,” said Martyn Flint, manager at Chrysanthemums Direct.

“There was a gap in the market, which led us to become the largest supplier of young chrysanthemum plants to the public in the UK.”
Celebrating its 10th birthday in 2018, Chrysanthemums Direct has been awarded 59 RHS Gold medals in the past decade and last year alone sold 120,000 young plants. 

What was the plan for Master Grower?

Chrysanthemums on displayMaster Grower gives nurseries the opportunity to produce a fantastic display that gives visitors a glimpse into life behind the scenes of day-to-day nursery life.

“There will be two elements to the design. The first will tell the story of how we grow chrysanthemums commercially for the cut-flower market – from taking cuttings to the finished product – with information boards,” said Martyn.

“The second will be chrysanthemums in a naturalistic garden setting, rather than the fairly regimented displays we normally put on.
“As a Master Grower, we can be more creative, without the judges looking over our shoulder.”

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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.