I love to visit the RHS Chelsea Flower Show, for me this is the most prestigious and exciting event of the horticultural calendar! I enjoy seeing Chelsea’s show gardens of every size and style, I am always interested to discover the latest gardening products, and I really look forward to finding new favourite plants, whilst being reminded of old favourites. I so enjoy visiting Chelsea’s Grand Pavilion, which is filled with over one hundred exhibits created by expert growers, from nurseries that seem to specialise in growing almost every kind of plant.
Through my work I have become very well acquainted with so many fascinating plants, but I have also enjoyed getting to know some interesting people, many of whom I have met at the different gardens I have visited. I hold a deep affection for the Royal Botanical Gardens Kew, I am a great fan and supporter of Kew’s work in conservation and plant science, and I love to visit the beautiful glasshouses and gardens at Kew; Kew’s plant collections amaze and delight me!
It’s so important to appreciate, look after and cherish every square inch of earth, every inch of our planet. For those living in town centres or cities, or areas where outdoor space is at a premium, it can sometimes be hard to find inspiration of how to green up and make the most of the limited areas of ground, roof, or wall space that are available.
Garden designer Dr Catherine MacDonald devised the Seedlip Garden as a celebration of the pea – Pisum sativum. The Seedlip Garden features peas and plants related to peas – plants from the pea plant family – Fabaceae. This Space to Grow Garden also honours the work of three men and their work in relation to peas. The first man that the Seedlip Garden commemorates is Gregor Mendel (1822-1824).
The Welcome to Yorkshire Garden
At this year’s RHS Chelsea Flower Show I couldn’t wait to visit the Welcome to Yorkshire show garden, which was designed by Mark Gregory and built by Mark and Landform Consultants. This show garden took a picturesque, heart-warming view of the Yorkshire countryside to the centre of London, where I was there, ready to welcome the garden with open arms!
Daisy Roots is a small, independent nursery, run by Anne Godfrey in Hertfordshire. Anne Godfrey specialises in growing drought tolerant, hardy perennials and ornamental grasses, which Anne propagates herself from seeds and cuttings, at her nursery in Hertford. All of the plants sold by Daisy Roots are hardy, healthy, and drought resistant.
Last year, I celebrated Daisy Roots Gold Medal win at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2017, where I loved the beautiful irises, Verbascums, Anthemis, Aquilegias, and ornamental grasses that made up the nursery’s Gold Medal winning display!
At the RHS Chelsea Flower Show every single show garden, in every category has the opportunity to win a Gold Medal. There are no limitations on the number of Gold, Silver-Gilt, Silver, or Bronze medals that the judges can award, nor is there a requirement for any medal to be awarded – if none of the gardens are of Gold Medal standard, then no Gold Medals will be presented.
I have been waiting for this moment for some time now! I spoke to David Neale in 2015 about his ambition and aspiration to design and build a show garden at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show, so I was really excited when David told me that he would be building a show garden for the 2018 RHS Chelsea Flower Show! I have now visited David at the Chelsea Flower Show, I am so happy to tell you, that the Silent Pool Gin Garden was awarded a Silver-Gilt Medal by the RHS judges at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2018!
The Temperate House is the world’s largest surviving Victorian glasshouse! This substantial glasshouse is sited at the Royal Botanical Gardens Kew, which itself is a National Treasure and an UNESCO World Heritage Site. The Temperate House is a Grade I Listed Building. When this glasshouse’s refurbishment programme commenced work in 2013, the Temperate House was in a dilapidated condition, at this time the Temperate House was on English Heritage’s Buildings at Risk Register.
I interviewed Surrey based Garden Designer David Neale, of NealeRichards Garden Design, for the November 2015 edition of Vantage Point Magazine. During this interview David Neale spoke about his hopes for the future, and his ambition to design and build a garden for the RHS Chelsea Flower Show. I caught up with David earlier this year, when I was thrilled to discover that David’s dreams have come true!