Rhino Quarterly Newsletter July 2020

Rhino Quarterly Newsletter July 2020

A lot's happened in the last 3 months! You may have noticed...

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A lot has changed since our last newsletter back in March, not just for us but for the world. When the Coronavirus reached the UK and we went into lockdown a few months ago, no one could predict what would happen.

Our lifestyles were forced to change rapidly. Among these lifestyle changes comes principally the need for at-home entertainment. And that is a need we, in the gardening business, have been no exception to.


Lockdown Gardening

Keep safe and get green-fingered

Rhino Greenhouse Premium 10x20 Plain Aluminium



The country went gardening mad during lockdown! Our Rhinos have been flying off the shelves (or galumphing heavily from their enclosures, if you are of a facetious, metaphor-loving bent, like me) and we’ve had to adapt just like everyone else.

Amid the challenges we have all been facing, there are certainly positives to be found. And a surge in gardening is of course going to be top of our list. Hands-on, wholesome hobbies are just what people need right now. We recommend gardening to everyone, as well as any pursuit that has the power to improve our mental and physical health.

Many hobbies can be constructive as well as enjoyable. Knit your own clothes, bake your own bread, grow your own food and flowers. Gardening means spending less money in supermarkets, living sustainably and aiding the environment – even if you are not a strictly organic gardener, you can trust that your homegrown fruit, veg and flowers haven’t flown halfway around the world to reach your kitchen table.

Hobby-ing has kept us sane through lockdown and it’s also been incredibly important in supporting small businesses. I have personally gone to great efforts to buy my various supplies from small companies during lockdown, and as a British manufacturer ourselves, we have been hugely impressed by the support from customers over the last few months, so thank you.

Our Rhino Forum has blown up as well, with many members of our gardening family sharing their gardening experiences since lockdown began and we are so heartened by the joy and solace people have found in their gardens and greenhouses.

"Who’d have known that this February purchase would have already been SO valuable, not just to the small toms, sweet peas and Persian clover enjoying the balmy atmosphere, but to the owner’s sanity in an age of social isolation. Thank you so much."
Kate Clark




Grapes Hill Community Garden

The Grapes Hill Community Garden had their first public event of the year last weekend (27th July 2020): Nature Art in the Garden. Local artists exhibiting their work, all inspired by the natural world. Many of the artists present are part of the co-operatively run Norwich Art Shop. It was lovely to see the garden full of creative people and happy faces again. The garden is now open to the public, so drop in any time if you’re nearby.

Norwich Art Shop at Grapes Hill


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Ellen Mary

Ellen Mary returned to the UK! She's been hauled up in North Carolina for most of the Spring and only recently returned to her allotment and her Rhino in Norfolk at the beginning of July. Ellen is also an ambassador for the Grapes Hill garden and so we had a catch up together too.

Watch Ellen's latest video update from her allotment.

Norfolk School of Gardening

Norfolk School of Gardening has reopened its classroom with a great selection of courses once again available for booking. I joined for a day of vertical planting a few weeks ago, Creating a Green Wall. The beautiful walled garden at Ketteringham Hall has been well tended during lockdown, with new beds and trees in place, as well as an abundance of flowers. In order to sustain themselves, the school become a plant nursery during lockdown, nurturing plants to sell. The enterprise was a great success and they are likely to make it an ongoing service.

Gill Meller

We’re bowled over by Gill Meller’s kitchen garden project. He wasn’t a gardener in January, and now he's harvesting an abundance of fruit and vegetables daily. Follow Gill on Instagram to see his progress.

Click here to see a video of Gill Meller's garden and Rhino back in spring.


Rhino Instagrammers

We're lucky enough to be part of a great community of people on social media, and throughout lockdown they've brought smiles to our faces. Here are a couple of our favourites that we recommend to you.

Claire from @sowing_at_the_stoop took over our Instagram for a day last month. And she even sent me some seeds in the post. So I can now add cobra beans to my tiny garden-cum-allotment and I can’t wait to see how they grow. The seedlings are already massive!

Sam from @sammarshallart has been posting videos diligently almost every day since lockdown. Geeing us all up with baking, gardening and printing – a mini dachshund running amok around her ankles all the while.

Georgie the Novice Gardener

AKA, Yours Truly.

I have spent lockdown putting what I have learnt into practise in my own garden. As an absolute novice with modest plans prior to the pandemic, recent months gave me much of more of an opportunity to explore than I ever expected. I now have more containers than I can count and a variety of flowers, vegetables and herbs flourishing and being harvested. My Rhino Raised beds is filling up with kale and tomatoes, with the aid of PlantGrow and advice from all manner of sources – chiefly from our friends at Norfolk School of Gardening, Sara from Hawkwell Herbs, Claire from Sowing at the Stoop and YouTuber Eli Appleby-Donald (I cannot thank all of you enough!). Gardening is a new love for me and it could not have come at a better time.

Follow the stories on Instagram to look out for updates from my small garden-cum-allotment.



Getting excited to grow your own has been more important than ever this year, that's why we've been thrilled to give away fantastic GYO prizes throughout lockdown. Follow us on Instagram to get involved in future giveaways!

Rhino growbed


Lisa from @allotmentlifeuk has transformed a tiny outdoor space into an entire supermarket veg aisle in the last few months. We teamed up for a giveaway in June and one lucky winner will soon be getting a completely free Rhino Raised Beds delivered!

Right at the beginning of lockdown, when the growing season was just beginning, we partnered up with Seed Pantry to give away a Rhino Seed Tray Rack and a 6-month subscription for monthly GYO packages.

Gill Meller’s much anticipated Root, Stem, Leaf, Flower was released at the end of May and we did a giveaway on Instagram to help promote it. We got to have a sneak peak as well, and my word if it doesn’t all look scrumptious!



Send Us Your Videos

stay connected and share the gardening love

We’ve been absolutely delighted with the response to our video request campaign we set up in May. We’ve had videos from happy Rhino owners all over the UK and beyond. We’ll be putting the footage together and sharing it out in the public soon, so keep your eyes peeled and you might even see yourself on screen!

Click here for details on submitting your own video.

As a teaser for now, here's a video put together by Graeme Taplin back when his own greenhouse was being installed earlier this year.


Rhino Greenhouses installation at a Norfolk property. from Graeme Taplin on Vimeo.



Summer Reads

Root, Stem, Leaf, Flower by Gill Meller

Gill Meller’s much anticipated Root, Stem, Leaf, Flower was released at the end of May and we did a giveaway on Instagram to help promote it. We got to have a sneak peak as well, and my word if it doesn’t all look scrumptious!

Why I’m No Longer Talking To White People About Race by Reni Eddo-Lodge

A powerful book that poses the important questions. A challenging but necessary read for some; a message of solidarity and community for others - important for us all.


The Lost Future of Pepperharrow by Natasha Pulley

I am a big fan of Natasha Pulley’s work and have read all her published novels (to date, 3). The Watchmaker of Filigree Street was her debut and a bestseller back when it was released 2015. The latest release is the sequel and is just as sparkling and engrossing as her first. Magical and vivacious in its telling and characters to fall in love with, it strafes the line between fiction and fantasy.

For some more plant-ish book recommendations, see our blog from Ellen Mary last month.

Man Booker Longlist Announced

The Longlist for this year's Man Booker prize was announced earlier this week. Have you got your favourites picked out yet? Click here to see the list.





There’s still time to extend your growing season with a Rhino greenhouse in your garden. Package deals with up to £500 off in our most popular sizes and colours. We’ve also got a limited run on Antique Ivory, so get your orders in now before they sell out!

Rhino Raised beds

Rhino GrowBeds – Aluminium Raised Beds – are on the horizon! Raised beds in a variety of sizes and colours, suitable for any garden; add versatility to your growing space.

Rhino Gardeners' Forum

The Facebook group for keen greenhouse gardeners and those thinking of getting a greenhouse.



If you're a Rhino Owner with an interesting story to tell, we'd love to hear from you.

You can get in touch with us on social media or you can email us on service@greenhousesdirect.co.uk

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