Hardy Plant Society

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The Hardy Plant Society is a British charity[1] that promotes the cultivation of hardy herbaceous plants. The Society was founded in 1957[2] by a group of gardeners and nurserymen. It has approximately 10,000 members[3] and provides information about familiar and less well known perennials, how to grow them and where they may be obtained. The Society also works towards ensuring that all garden worthy perennial plants remain in cultivation and have the widest distribution. Its President is Roy Lancaster.


The Society aims to inform and encourage the novice gardener, stimulate and enlighten the more knowledgeable, and entertain and enthuse all gardeners bonded by a love for, and an interest in, hardy perennial plants. Throughout the year there is a wide range of events hosted by local group members, from plant study days to residential weekends to garden visits. The Society also organises overseas garden tours. The Society exhibits at major shows throughout the country to stimulate interest in hardy plants. Visitors can see hardy plants in bloom and leaf in their natural season and find out more about the work of the Society. An extensive library of slides covering a wide range of hardy plants is available to members on loan. Slides have been donated by photographers in the Society.


The Hardy Plant Society is concerned about the conservation of garden plants. Countless fine plants have totally disappeared from cultivation and remain but a memory. The Society is working towards ensuring that older, rarer and lesser-known perennial plants are conserved and made available to gardeners generally.

Seed distribution scheme[edit]

Every member can join in the annual Seed Distribution Scheme by obtaining or donating hardy perennial seed. The Seed List offers over 2,500 varieties of rare, unusual and familiar seeds and is sent to every member in December.


National membership of the Society gives members the opportunity to join a local group and take part in a range of activities. There are around 40 local groups across the UK and national members are invited to join the group nearest to them. Each group offers a range of gardening activities including lectures from gardening speakers, garden visits, plant sales and educational and social events throughout the year. Most groups produce their own newsletters.

Within the Society there are specialist groups that members can join. They produce their own newsletters and organise meetings and events for fellow enthusiasts. The Correspondents Group ensures that members who are unable to attend meetings can remain in touch with one another and exchange gardening ideas and information.

The Hardy Plant Society produces a twice-yearly journal, The Hardy Plant, with contributions from leading UK and international plant enthusiasts. It contains articles on hardy perennials and gardens as well as contributions from members. A newsletter is circulated three times a year that provides information on all the Society's events, activities, interests and group contacts. An annual leaflet lists the private gardens of members that can be visited and a register of lecturers.


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