Giant grass panda goes on display

Picture: Phil Wilkinson
Picture: Phil Wilkinson
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A ONE-and-a-half ton giant panda – pictured towering over five-year-old Olivia Ducreux – made from turf is to take centre stage at Gardening Scotland.

The national gardening celebration, which is expected to attract more than 40,000 green-fingered visitors, opened at The Royal Highland Centre Edinburgh in Ingliston today.

And beforehand, four-year-olds Joshua Riley and Lewis Watson were invited to give the plants one last watering.

Dozens of top nurseries – including 18 Chelsea medallists – will create elaborate floral displays and pack the New Hopetoun Gardens Floral Hall with flowers.

For the three days of the show, it will become the biggest plant fair in Scotland.

Among the 400 exhibitors is Ian Barbour of JBA Seed Potatoes, who will put the finishing touches to his Guinness World Record attempt for exhibiting seed potatoes, with a display of 667 different varieties.

Experts in the RHS Gardening Theatre will answer queries, while gardening celebrities Alys Fowler and Katie Rushworth will be lining up with top chefs in the Cookery Theatre.