Here you can find all information and resources needed for Press Enquiries regarding Sparsholt College’s 2021 RHS Chelsea Flower Show garden ‘The Natural Kalendar’.


  • For any media enquiries, please contact the College Press Team on:

    Tel: 01962 797215

    Urgent Out of Hours: 07793 721997


  • 12.45PM Monday 20September

    Tom Heap, Journalist and BBC Countryfile Presenter will be supporting the exhibit ‘The Natural Kalendar’ which has been created by Sparsholt College students in collaboration with Gilbert White’s House and Gardens to celebrate Gilbert White’s 301st birthday. This garden shows how observations by White (1720 – 93) in Selborne, Hampshire enlightened people to the links between seasons and species activity.  

    It brings to life phenology – the study of variability in seasons and nature’s lifecycles – and how this may impact on how we select plants in future.  Features include White’s thatched spinning Wine Pipe Seat which we anticipate Tom will be demonstrating. 

    Photocall Coordinator Email: 

  • Positive interaction with nature – working with nature and your local natural environment. 

    • Student team made up of 16-24 year olds.
    • GW300 – the year long tercentenary celebrations of Gilbert White’s birth using elements taken directly from his garden ‘The Wakes’ which feature in his famous publication which has never since been out of print ‘The Natural History of Selborne’ – still a reference point for naturalists, ecologists and ornithologists today. 
    • The spinning ‘Wine pipe seat’ – Simon the thatcher, a traditional craftsperson helped create the seat seen at Gilbert Whites House and has helped to build the one for the garden. 
    • Slate signs, changed daily will quote from Gilbert White’s 18th century manuscripts for ‘The Natural History of Selborne’ a publication never since out of print and which resonates through the centuries and is still a reference point for naturalists, ecologists and ornithologists today. 
    • Visitors will see features from White’s garden ‘The Wakes’ – the thatched, spinning ‘Wine Pipe Seat’, a mini Haha wall and the ‘Six Quarters’ – recreated using plantings familiar to him alongside cutting edge cultivars such as the Thompson & Morgan Plant of the Year 2020 entries.  
    • Recording climate change – a pioneering phenologist ahead of his time 

  • A digital version of the Garden Leaflet can be downloaded here.

  • If you require any images and logos, please get in touch with the College Press Team on

  • You can find all of our videos for RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2020-2021 on our Youtube Playlist here.

  • Horticulture at Sparsholt College Hampshire 

    Sparsholt College Hampshire has a long history of Chelsea medal success achieving nine Gold medals, three Silver-gilt medals, six Silver medals and three Bronze medals since 1998. It offers a range of courses at its Winchester campus which boasts five hectares dedicated to horticultural practice, including the Gardeners’ Question Time Potting Shed, landscaped gardens, lawns and decorative beds, a garden design studio, tropical glasshouses, an orchard and ornamental grounds providing a wide variety of plants for identification and analysis. 


    Sparsholt College offers the following Horticulture courses: 

    • Level 1-3 Horticulture 
    • Level 2 Apprenticeship in Horticulture (Golf Greenkeeper, Sports Turf Operative, Horticulture or Landscape Operative) 
    • Adults can try their hand at a new skill or develop a long-held interest through the College’s part-time courses such as RHS courses including Practical Horticulture, Principles in Garden Planning Theory and Principles in Plant Growth Theory.   


    Sparsholt College Hampshire 

    Set in beautiful Hampshire countryside, close to Winchester, Sparsholt College Hampshire is renowned as one of the UK’s leading land-based colleges with a national and international reputation for excellence.  

    Studying at Sparsholt College offers the perfect blend of hands-on training within superb industry-standard facilities, taught by real experts and specialists. 


    Industry-Standard Facilities 

    The College has continued to invest in its campus, with a further £2 million investment in Animal Health & Welfare facilities planned to open in September 2020. Home to The National Zoo Academy, the licensed zoo currently houses over 1,200 animals from 200 species. The extensive campus facilities also include an Equine Centre with new Rider Performance Studio, featuring a state-of-the-art Racewood Eventing Simulator plus up to 75 horses, one indoor and three outdoor arenas.  

    The sporting complex includes the largest collegiate climbing wall in the region and a modern new building is home to the Motor Vehicle and Agricultural Engineering department. 

    That’s not all – there is a Game and Wildlife Centre, outdoor rifle range, a fishing lake, a dedicated Aquatic Research & Conservation Centre plus a Fish Hatchery. The College has a 400-hectare farm with sheep barn, pig unit, beef barn, dairy unit and top of the range tractors. There are acres of gardens, glasshouses and polytunnels and the Horticulture Department is home to the BBC Radio 4 Gardeners’ Question Time Potting Shed as well as being Gold medal winners at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show.  



    Sparsholt College offers a whole range of courses from apprenticeships through to Master’s degrees. The subject areas include Agriculture, Animal Management and Zoo Biology; Arboriculture and Forestry; Conservation; Equine Studies; Fishery Studies and Marine Ecology; Game and Wildlife; Horticulture and Garden Design; Motor Vehicle; Sport and Outdoor Education; Veterinary Nursing, all rated Good by Ofsted in the College’s last two inspections. A wealth of short courses and industry-specific training is also on offer in these areas for professional development or leisure. 

    As a specialist college, Sparsholt has on-site residential accommodation for around 400 students from the age of 16, enabling students from around the country to benefit from courses that may not be available in their own region with round the clock care rated Outstanding by Ofsted. 

  • 2020 marked the tricentenary of the birth of Gilbert White – a true hero of Hampshire and the natural world, and the naturalist regarded as the ‘father of ecology’.

    His observations and studies enlightened people to the changing seasons, and the species activity that it influenced. This evolved into the study of Ecology and Phenology that we know today.

    Gilbert White was the first to ‘observe nature narrowly’, and act on it, demonstrating that the individual could make a real and impacting difference. He taught the importance of living in harmony with the natural world, and inspired the thinkers and scientific innovators that came after him.

    The Hampshire town of Selborne and its surrounding landscape inspired Gilbert White’s life-long investigation of the natural world, culminating in his world-famous book – ‘The Natural History and Antiquities of Selborne’. White’s careful recording of the natural history of Selborne directly influenced the growth and development of the natural sciences and inspired the minds of many, including the renowned naturalist Charles Darwin.

    Get in touch:

    Collections & Marketing Manager: Kimberley James


  • Thompson & Morgan was initially started in William Thompson’s small garden. William Thompson then went into partnership with John Morgan and the seed raising firm continued to expand and flourish. William Thompson and John Morgan lived to see their company become one of the country’s greatest seed firms with the reputation for introducing more species and varieties to the British Gardening public than any other seed company – a tradition that continues to this day.

    Thompson & Morgan will also be presenting their entries for Plant of the Year 2021 on The Natural Kalendar garden. These are: Camellia 1001 Summer Nights Jasmine, Ficus carrica Little Miss Figgy, Hylotelephium SunSparkler® Series (‘Dream Dazzler’) and Lathyrus x hammettii Three Times As Sweet. Find out more here.

    Get in contact:

    Vicky Ager Tel: 01473 695200

  • Meet the student teams from 2021 and 2020.