Events & exhibitions

Lachenalia exhibition 2019

23rd Mar 2019 10:00 - 31st Mar 2019


Lachenalia exhibition 2019

See the UK's eminent collection of Lachenalias for one week only!

Our collection

Spearheaded by Nicholas de Rothschild, Exbury's lachenalia exhibition has substantially grown in size over the last few years. Most recently, by the acquisition of the late Bill Squires' National Collection. Also included in the exhibition will be a collection of orchids, grown right here in Exbury's glasshouses.

2009-03-17 (5) Nigel Philpott sqOur plant display will be accompanied by information boards, explaining more about the genus and its history here at Exbury. 

The genus

Sometimes referred to as the Leopard Lily, Lachenalias are bulbous perrennials with upwards of 130 species. They have an exceptionally long flowering season; from October and over the winter months, with some continuing through until May. Those on display in Exbury's exhibition will be at their very best in March, showcasing a compendium of bright oranges, yellows and pinkish-reds.

The inspiration

This Rothschild history of obtaining and propagating rare and unusual plants inspired the lachenalia and orchid collections displayed in this exhibition. Exbury's founder, Lionel de Rothschild, collected a substantial variety of orchids during the 1920s and 1930s. However, due to the circumstances at Exbury during the Second World War, this collection was largely dissipated, and then totally lost after Lionel's death in 1942. Roughly 10 years ago the opportunity arose to build up the orchid collection again and also to insert the South African genus Lachenalia, hitherto unknown to the experts at Exbury, into our rare plant collections. Nicholas de Rothschild (Lionel's grandson) jumped at the chance, and with the help of Groundskeeper Theo and gardener Emma, our lachenalia and orchid collections have flourished in recent years.

Theo Herselman with a selection of Exbury Lachenalias sq

Theo with a selection of lachenalias in an Exbury Gardens glasshouse

To purchase your tickets to Exbury Gardens and this FREE exhibition click here.


Exbury Gardens is celebrating its 100th anniversary in 2019. To celebrate we're opening a new garden and history exhibition, as well as planning a number of special events. For more information on #Exbury100 click here.

‘A truly fantastic day out. My wife and I were bowled over by the amazing spring colours of rhododendrons and azaleas and there was literally colour everywhere. There are beautiful areas to walk through as well as places to sit. We took a picnic in the hope of being able to sit by one of the ponds and were not disappointed – the reflections were as spectacular as the real thing! The next thing we want to do is return in the autumn to see the colours change as it must be beautiful’

David Parker, Christchurch

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