Alien plants win Gold at Chelsea

Posted on Jun 8, 2017

Alien plants win Gold at Chelsea

Congratulations to our client CABI (the Centre for Agriculture and Biosciences International) who won a gold medal at this year’s Chelsea Flower Show for their first-ever solo exhibit – an educational display that showed some of the UK’s most invasive alien weeds including Japanese knotweed.

Matter PR worked closely with the CABI PR team to promote the garden to the media and coverage included the Daily Mail, BBC Radio 5 Live, BBC TV News South East Today, i-news, The Telegraph, and the Oxford Mail.

The story was reported by 14 individual websites, with a reach (based on IP addresses) of over 1 billion unique visitors per month, and it is estimated to have reached over 639,000 individuals worldwide.

The exhibit was the vision of young CABI scientist, Suzy Wood, currently reading for a PhD in ecology sponsored by the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC). She wanted to show the impact of invasive alien weeds on the UK’s environment and infrastructure, including Japanese knotweed on property prices, buddleia on the railway and Himalayan balsam on riversides.

“I liked the idea of communicating CABI’s work on invasive species to a wider audience, helping people learn more about the option of natural control of invasive weeds. We applied last year to exhibit, and it’s been the perfect opportunity to showcase the science of biocontrol and connect with people who are already passionate about plants and the environment.”

Suzy Wood, Research Scientist, CABI

Created for the educational ‘Discovery Zone’, the exhibit showed how plants can spread and cause problems when moved from their native habitat to a new one, with no natural enemies like diseases and insects to keep them in check.

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