NOTCUTTS garden centres are celebrating a hat-trick of successes after winning their third gold medal in a row.

The latest one came last week at the Hampton Court Palace Flower Show and follows gold medals at the Chelsea Flower Show in May and at BBC Gardeners' World Live in June.

On top of that, the brand new Rose Pearl by Mattocks Roses (owned by Notcutts) was one of the new roses presented to the press by Rachel de Thame at Hampton Court on July 1.

Mark Vaughan, manager of Notcutts in Bagshot, said: "Winning a gold medal at each of these top shows is a monumental achievement for everyone involved, from the designers and nursery staff to everyone who worked on the exhibit, including staff from the garden centre."

To win gold medals at three successive shows, Notcutts had to show plants in top condition over seven weeks, transporting them and other materials across the country. In addition, the sensory garden theme had to be tailored to the individual sites at each show.

The sensory exhibit comprised five distinct areas, one dedicated to each of the five senses — sight, smell, taste, touch and hearing.

Rose Pearl is an exciting new floribunda for 2002, producing masses of pearl pink flowers throughout summer that have a most unusual form.

The flowers are almost camellia-like in form and are very attractive.

A delightful soft fragrance accompanies the flowers, which are produced throughout the summer and well into autumn.

The robust foliage is extremely disease resistant and grows 3ft high by 2ft wide. Rose Pearl is available at all 13 Notcutts garden centres.

Only seven companies achieved gold at all three shows and, of course, not all companies can logistically manage to exhibit at all three shows, so it is quite an achievement for Notcutts.