Scores of strollers turning onto Penarth Pier this morning found that the familiar vista of planks, railings and immaculate paintwork was just a little bit different from usual.
More than forty different species of plants – many of them exotic varieties – have been specially brought-in by a combined staff/volunteeer team from the National Trust’s Dyffryn Gardens to form a temporary free exhibition which – in substance if not in scale – many thought was almost the equal of the Chelsea Flower show.
One of the largest plants on show is a banana tree – but there are also palm-trees , herbs, shrubs, flowers , and a variety of exotic species which are unlikely to be encountered in any garden centre.
The Dyffryn House Gardens team fielding a torrent of questions from fascinated visitors. There are free brochures to take away
The intention of free exhibition is to give visitors to Penarth Pier an idea of the range of species they can see growing in situ at Dyffryn House – but in fact the exhibition immediately attracted dozens of local residents living near the Pier who – even though they live in apartments – cultivate a wide range of pot plants themselves. They descended on the Dyffryn House team to bombard the team with questions with questions and admire the exhibits.
The plants aren’t for sale – but that didn’t stop some members of the public asking they could buy some of them . At Dyffryn Gardens however, many plants can be bought every day including organically-grown rhubarb , leeks and onions.
Undoubtedly the glasshouse species which created the most interest on Penarth Pier was Aeonium “Rednum Zwartkey” – a dark brown glossy flower which apparently needs a huge amount of drainage to grow.
The Dyffryn Gardens Exhibition will continue at Penarth Pier until 21:30 this evening