Last week we ventured West to visit the annual RHS Chelsea Flower Show, a brilliant opportunity to glean inspiration, to pick up on new trends and to celebrate all things horticultural! On the approach to the show we were pleased to see that the neighbours of the Royal Hospital had fully embraced the shows spirit and were proudly displaying their small urban gardens, we particularly liked this basement garden close to one of the shows entrances.
The run-up to the Show has been more difficult than before for the gardeners due to our tumultuous weather: a dry spring, summer at Easter and then gales harming plants on the ground.
Anyhow so on to the gardens we loved! So very close to our heart was ‘the grow your own’ inspired B&Q Garden by Laurie Chetwood and Patrick Collins which represented a 9m living wall of thymes, camomile and oregano, highlighting that you don’t have to have a conventional garden to produce food in a city. Gazing upwards you could see giant trays of salad, herbs, fruit and vegetables.
The B & Q Garden
The Irish Sky garden designed by Diarmuid Gavin, was a flying machine and inspired the Oscar winning Dublin animator Richie Baneham who created the visual effects for Avatar. With pools on the ground, and a flying crane laden with grasses, photinias and bamboos with trees, the garden was a show highlights and popular with crowds and critics alike.
The Irish Sky Garden
The smaller artisan gardens were loftier alternatives to the larger show gardens, yet they shared the same theatricality and vision. We particularly liked the Fever Tree garden with its enchanting tree house surrounded by citrus, gingers, herbs and a small spring.
The Fever Tree Garden
Our favourite garden and probably one of our most over the past five years in terms of urban was the “Winds of Change” garden sponsored by Stockton Drilling, and designed by Jamie Dunstan. The garden’s industrial look was inspired by recycled wind turbines placed in the garden; the design also featured a steel-framed structure acting as a shelter, with a built-in fireplace, log store and green roof with furniture from one of our favourite stores, re found. The planting was very loose and informal but had a hugely modern take which made us so excited. Its not that often we see something in gardening that we can pin the phrase fashion forward to, but this we definatly do!
The Winds of Change
Our other favourite highlight was the floral Temple and Dragon display from Thailand, completely erected from an abundance of flowers, truley spectacular!
Thailand Floral Display
On our way back to Sloane Square station, we enjoyed the walk along the King’s Road admiring the different retail tributes to the Flower Show. The shop window and approach to Jigsaw was probably the most grand and a fitting finish to the Show. Farewell for another year……