Spring is here and summer is just around the corner, it’s the perfect time of year for gardening. Everything is green and luscious and flowers are in full bloom, it can only mean one thing in the garden design world: the annual RHS Chelsea Flower Show is in full swing.
We have enjoyed many years exhibiting at Chelsea, but we are giving ourselves some time off. Instead, we have decided to invest our time into developing some new products, so who knows we could return with some exciting new designs next year!
Tickets to the RHS Chelsea Flower Show are like gold dust and we know many people aren’t lucky enough to get tickets, so we wanted to share with you some of our favourite Chelsea gardens and trends to help inspire your next project.
1. The RHS back to nature garden
The biggest story from RHS Chelsea this year is the RHS Back to Nature Garden, co-designed by HRH The Duchess of Cambridge with Andrée Davies and Adam White.
We think the message of this garden is so important as it promotes the physical and emotional wellbeing that access to green spaces and gardening provides. We love the feeling you get when surrounded by nature (and by solid, great quality garden joinery!).
2. Bring back the elm trees
Our director Julian Furness shares a love of Elm Trees with Dame Judi Dench and was excited to see the new campaign, ‘Re-Elming the British Countryside’, that was unveiled at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show on the 20th May. Adam Dunnett, sales director at Hillier Trees, handed over the first Dutch Elm disease resistant sapling to Dame Judi Dench on ‘The Stihl Hillier Garden’.
When Dutch Elm disease struck Britain in the late 1960’s, few people realised that it would wipe out more than 30 million mature Elm trees, almost the entire UK population of Elms. Following this devastating loss, Hillier, Britain’s leading grower of semi-mature trees, partnered with specialist Elm breeders in the USA and Europe, resulting in the development of new disease-resistant species and the creation of ‘Resistant’-Elms.
A host of further sustainable features are showcased in the Savills and David Harber Garden. These include biodiverse large trees, a green wall that filters pollution, a water purifying wetland area, permeable surfaces, and a filtration pool that cleans grey water and stores it via a water harvesting system for irrigation use.
The theme of sustainability is supported by the planting in The Harmonious Garden of Life which promotes environmental awareness and offers solutions to regenerate our eco-system in response to global warming.
The Resilience Garden - commissioned to celebrate the Forestry Commission’s centenary, looks ahead to the challenges facing forests of the future. It explores how our woodlands can be made resilient to a changing climate and the increasing threats of pests and diseases.
4. Our favourite gardens
We can’t choose between Helen Elks-Smith’s Warner's Distillery Garden and Kate Gould’s Greenfingers Charity Garden.
The Warner’s Gin Distillery garden features some of our favourite new garden design trends: a vibrant living Sedum roof, Euphorbias and Thyme, Jurassic Ferns set amongst imposing rocks, and a nod to architect Frank Lloyd Wright’s masterpiece ‘Fallingwater’. The perfect place to enjoy a gin and tonic!
Kate Gould’s garden for the Greenfingers Charity Garden combines retro green tiling with a host of evergreen planting and delicate floral bursts. With its sensitive planting and enchanted water-feature, this innovative garden design aims to highlight and promote the therapeutic benefits of the 56 outside spaces created over the past 20 years by Greenfingers Charity, the charity is dedicated to creating inspiring gardens for life-limited children and their families who spend time in hospices across the UK.
The prestigious RHS Chelsea Flower Show inspires gardeners and designers from around the world. Offering a plethora of inspirational ideas within its stunning show gardens, bijou artisan gardens and floral displays within the great marquee. So if you haven’t managed to attend the show this year, we hope we have inspired you with some of the latest trends and ideas to motivate you to get your garden summer ready.