The annual Chelsea Flower Show took place in May, and as always it attracted visitors from all over the world. This Royal Horticultural Society event has been running since the 1860s, and has been held in Chelsea for more than a century, and this year’s offerings were just as spectacular, just as colourful and just as dramatic as ever.
While the focus for many visitors to the show will be viewing the hugely impressive gardens, the RHS are keen to promote education in regard to how we interact with our gardens, and how we can all get more involved with making them more user-friendly. Brown Earth Landscapes’ Claire Reading has designed gardens at Chelsea before, winning a Silver Medal in 2004.
It’s not easy to define which designs are the finest, of course, purely because beauty and innovation are always in the eye of the beholder. We’ve been looking at the various gardens in the past few days, and we’ve chosen a few that have really captured our imagination. Here are three of the very best:
The designer of the Wedgewood Garden, Jo Thompson, has used a perfect blend of traditional and contemporary to create a wonderfully eye-catching display. Based on a tea garden, a popular spot for socialising in the late 18th century, it features subtle splashes of colour and movement among the greenery, and a delightful stream happily passing by. The centrepiece is an iconic sculpture created by Allan McRobie.
Morgan Stanley Garden for the NSPCC
This garden is based around the theme of going from the dark into the light, and is a metaphor for the work that the NSPCC does with children. We love the clean lines and the luxurious plants, not to mention a linear cedarwood pavilion which provides a tranquil escape from the outside world. Designed by Chris Beardshaw, it deservedly won the Best Show Garden award.
Urban Flow Garden
One of the things we love about the Chelsea Flower Show is that many gardens are designed for small spaces in our towns and cities, and as such they can easily be envisaged away from the confines of a formal show. The Urban Flow Garden offers strong dark colours and bold geometric shapes, and features exotic plants including Ginkgo bilboa, Cornus canadensis and Rosa glauca. It was designed by Tony Woods and built by Garden Club London.
Here at Brown Earth Landscapes, we like to keep a close eye on developments in the horticultural scene. We take inspiration from all types of gardens in all parts of the world, giving us a comprehensive overview of landscaping in Scotland and across the globe.