The RHS Chelsea Flower Show: Great Pavilion and more

While there were plenty of golds presented to the show gardens, the prizes didn’t stop there at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show. The Great Pavilion awarded a grand total of 62 golds, 29 silver-gilt floras, 7 silver floras and 4 bronze floras alone!

With so much on offer, you could easily spend more than one day walking around the exhibition, so I definitely recommend visiting if you get the chance before the show closes its doors on the 25th May. For one year only, the RHS has waived its ban on gnomes too, so if you fancy browsing the decorated creatures, this is your chance. Each one is the handiwork of a different celebrity from Lily Allen to Dame Helen Mirren.

For those of you that can’t make it in time this year, I’ve pulled together an extra roundup of the wonderful gardening on display. And as for the gnomes, they’re being auctioned off online to encourage us all to become more green-fingered.

Image Source: The Telegraph

Great Pavilion Gold

You can always count on 68 times gold award winning Hillier Nurseries to bring something unique to the show and this year they came back fighting with risky colour combinations. Speaking to the BBC, Andy McIndoe, Designer, explained that often our biggest mistake is thinking that the traditional plants provide all the colour. He’s opted for lots of red foliage to add interest to the already risky hot orange and cerise pink. Andy’s biggest tip for future Chelsea gardeners? “Never rely on specific plants because you never quite know what they’re going to do.” So it’s always a good idea to have plenty of extra plants to rely on!


Image Source: BBC

Fellow gold winner Hampshire Carnivorous Plants occupied their own space, bringing the slightly scary looking carnivorous plants for us to marvel over. While I wouldn’t fancy owning any one of these myself, the Nepenthes hybrid ‘Rebecca Soper’ – named after designer Matthew Soper’s daughter, we’re told is easy to grow and reliable.

Image Source: BBC

We can even grow it indoors in a kitchen if we like. If I were adventurous enough to pick one of his species however, I would much rather opt for the very tall and green Sarracenia flava var. Maxima (middle, back row). It’s bright, just as reliable and a lot nicer to look at!

Image Source: RHS

Best Fresh Garden

Now normally at Chelsea, we expect to see plenty of wonderful flowers in bloom but After the Fire by Gold Scape Design has attracted attention for all the wrong reasons (or right, depending on how you look at it). Out of the garden rise plenty of tall sticks, with the odd flower here and there, to brighten up the space. After all, this wouldn’t be a flower show without flowers! Modelled on the regeneration after a forest fire, it’s certainly deserving of its ‘fresh’ award, encouraging us to think about growth in an insightful way.


Image Source: Laura Ashley

Great Pavilion Diamond Jubilee Award

Ensuring that we think about our relationship with plants differently, Warmenhaven receives credit for a display of alliums and amaryllis. The purple and white alliums have been grown in square boxes rather than circular tubs – giving the impression that they’re balancing on top of one another. Meanwhile, the amaryllis hang from the ceiling like pendant lights, giving us no choice but to look up at them rather than down.

Image Source: The Telegraph

From Warmenhaven to Hillier Nurseries – no matter where you look, the power’s certainly with the plants!


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One Comment

  1. There are so gardeners that the BBC can call on yet we have to put up with that scruffy individual monty Don has no horticultural training and yet we have to suffer has boring voice. Thank goodness for the mute key. What an absolute delight Sophie is to listen to
    Regards Peter G hadley

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