Friday, 23 May 2014

RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2014 Part 1 -The Show Gardens and Best in Show WInner

I went to the Flower show this afternoon.
The last twenty years I have walked by Sloane Square during the show, I have never known the show not to be sold out.

I have tried my best to take pictures for you to get a gist of the mood and angles that aren't always the most photogenic.
But for those of you who are hard core gardening enthusiasts, please click onto the official RHS Chelsea Flower show website for more picture and more in depth information on planting.

There are three main sections to the show so I shall start with the show gardens.  

The first one was the M&G Garden ( more and much better pics on the link) designed by the now legend Cleve West.  
He has won best in show twice recently!
This year he won a gold medal to add to his awards.

Interestingly this garden epitomized the trend seen elsewhere where it was rather wild and loose with a lot of long grass planting.
Sorry if I have offended gardeners with my very raw, basic and inarticulate description.

The next garden of note was the BrandAlley show garden ( please click for more information on the garden) that won a bronze.  I quite liked it but the designer was interviewed by Monty Don and expressed his disappointment which is rare because garden designers rarely admit things like that!

It was nice as you can see but the judges apparently thought the landscaping was a bit crude and elementary.
( Their words not mine.)
Plus my friend immediately noted he didn't like the color and we didn't spend time lingering like we did for others so perhaps there wasn't enough interest to keep us there.

Another gold medal winner was the RBC Waterscape garden.
Canadians should be proud because the sponsor was the Royal Bank of Canada.

I love a water feature anywhere and if I had a garden the only thing of which I am certain is that the garden would have some water running through it.

I remember liking last year's Telegraph garden and this year was no different. I can barely keep up with my hair cuts so don't know how feasible the upkeep of trees like this is for myself.
I liked the clean lines and edges softened by the rounded hedges.
I like the predominant green with a few spots of color punctuated with the yellow in the lemon trees.

I like gardens that give a different feel depending on the angle you view it such as this one.

Please take this comment for what it is and I am sure you won't agree but I didn't really understand and couldn't properly appreciate the Brewin Dolphin garden.

 It was nice...But messy and there was no point of view ( literally ).
 I couldn't see the wood from the trees.

 My eyes couldn't concentrate on anything and I remember feeling quite frustrated that I couldn't pinpoint a focal space.

There is always filming in the show and the BBC was filming at the special garden to commemorate WW1 called No Man's Land.


 Cloudy Bay which happens to be one of my favorite white wines sponsored this sensory garden and won a silver gilt.

 Another silver gilt winner and one garden that I could envision enjoying on a domestic scale was the St George's garden.
 It has a distinct path, varied heights, and a water feature.

 The Best Fresh Garden was called Mind's Eye.

 It was modern and traditional with smart landscaping.
 Plus they had some of the cutest gardeners.
 I also liked how different the garden looked at from various corners.

Now for best in show...
 It was the Laurent-Perrier Garden.
 It also happened to be my and my friend's favorite garden.
So much so we went back to the garden to see it a second time.

 This garden had no bad angle. 
You could stand anywhere and it looked fabulous.
 It was a good garden because even two people like us who don't garden looked at it and discussed aspects of it.
 We both agreed that this garden could suit almost every climate and country.
 It wouldn't look out of place in London, Los Angeles, Tokyo, and Melbourne.
 The garden was so calming.
 The only thing I would do is make the pool bigger so
I could do proper laps.
 But if I could this is the garden that I will be using as a blue print for any future possible garden.

As there is so much to cover, I will be posting a few more posts on the show for those who weren't able to attend.  Also please remember that due to my lack of camera skills, the crowds, and the weather I wasn't able to take great photos so please remember to go onto the official flower show website for more pics and info.


  1. Gaaah!!! So Jealous! Thank you for your photos, and looking forward to the next bunch too! I thought your descriptions were perfectly apt. It's a bit like Architecture (or any sort of design/ profession really)... the jargon is there to shut others out, your view is no less valid (or not correct in the first instance). Loved that Laurent Perrier garden too, especially the rill in it. I've always wanted a rill, but won't have one in my garden (for one thing, I think I'd be coping with constantly wet children playing in it). But they are such a lovely design device. Sounds like a fab day Naomi!! xx

    1. I really think you need to book your flights over for next year - come for design week and stay until the end of the flower show! You could put the kids for one term at a school and show them your old haunts? Actually while the show was nice the flowers weren't on tip top form and it was that much more crowded this year. They also gave out less golds and I can see why although the BBC were saying that the judges needed to be pickier but there were less gold medal stuff. And of course I am going with gut instinct here and no education about this stuff at all. But of course that is the beauty of it that it is mother nature we are dealing with so every year is going to be so different. That LPerrier garden was absolutely amazing. Made up for a little spark in the show gardens in fact. Not child friendly at all. It rained a little as expected but that didn't stop people. Hope you come along next year Heidi xx

  2. The English really know their gardens!! And if they happen to be cute, so much the better! Thanks for the tour.

  3. Wish I was much beauty and I am a gardener so what is not to love?
    Lucky you!

  4. Oh Wow.. I've long wanted to go!! never been yet
    Absolutely love the pictures and the info.. thanks for sharing

  5. thanks for the wonderful pictures Naomi!

  6. I always miss the show, either I arrive just before it opens or just after it's closed. I'm so happy to see these pics, thank you!

  7. The pictures are beautiful...lucky you for getting to go. Enjoy your week end.

  8. Thank you so much for these photos! I would love love to get to this show, scribbling notes about plant combinations. A wonderful distraction this morning when I should be out weeding!

  9. Hi all I am away so can't reply individually but am glad those of you who like gardens enjoyed it!

  10. So beautiful! Confession: my back yard looks a little like the messy one you show:). I tell myself the focal points are there but subtle...I would LOVE to attend this show one year. Maybe I should start planning! Thank you for the beautiful photos.

  11. Beautiful. And nice shout out to the Canadians!

  12. Thank you so much for taking us to the Show. What a treat.


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