Every year the Chelsea Flower Show exhibits the “latest innovative designs and must-have plants, crafted with skill by highly-talented designers and their teams” through a series of Show Gardens that are visited by Royalty (literally!).
This year’s winners include:
Best Show Garden | Gold Medal Winner – The Telegraph Garden
Inspired by the magnitude of geological events that have shaped and moulded our landscape over millions of years, this garden is about perspective of both time and scale. It reminds us of our own relatively insignificant and fleeting moment on Earth.
The garden represents a ‘captured landscape’ in which a gently gardened space exists within a larger, wilder setting. Dramatic bronze fins represent an ancient mountain range with a stream of melt water running in the gorge below. The planting is warm and semi-arid, an imagined plant community and contrived landscape echoing the chaparral of California’s Sierra Madre or the mattoral of the foothills of Chile’s Andes.
The garden highlights the need to adapt gardens to their environments and to futureproof them against a changing climate.
Designed by Andy Sturgeon FSGD
Built by Crocus
Best Fresh Garden | Gold Medal Winner - Antithesis of Sarcophagi
Martin Cook and Gary Breeze have created a garden set inside a giant granite cube. The Antithesis of Sarcophagi Garden is a representation of a world turned inside out; a garden inside a sculpture; desolation versus nature. The 44-tonne cube contains a mysterious rejuvenating woodland, invisble from the stark, ash-charred exterior other than through cracks in its surface.
Designed by Martin Cook and Gary Breeze
Built by Chris Holland Landscapes
Best Artisan Garden | Gold Medal Winner – Mekong Garden
The Garden has been designed by Sarah Eberle, supported by Fiona Campbell and Nick Weaver and is inspired by the floating gardens in the silk-weaving regions of Cambodia and the Mekong River. The 7 x 5m (23 x 16½ft) garden is entirely water with a small deck leading to a 'floating' lounger styled on a traditional fishing boat. Overhead a cantilevered parasol inspired by traditional fishing nets and silk weaving provides shade. The floating beds follow the style of the region and contain contain an eclectic mixture of fruit and vegetables such as spinach, kale, aubergine, gourds and okra, along with flowers for cutting within a waterside matrix.
Designed by Sarah Eberle FSGD
Built by Belderbos Landscapes
Best Construction Award | Gold Medal Winner – The M & G Garden
The M&G Garden has been inspired by the designer's memory of ancient oak woodland in Exmoor National Park where he spent his teenage youth. Rather than replicate a particular scene, the designer has chosen to pay contemporary homage to the landscape that made such an early impression on him.
A stone and gravel path through woodland-edge planting leads the visitor beyond stunted oaks and rocks to a smoother path, a sunken terrace and pool. An oak boundary frames the garden and the overriding oak theme is a metaphor for the sponsor's values: strength, growth and longevity.
Designed by Cleve West MSGD
Built by Swatton Landscape
To see more great show gardens from Chelsea CLICK HERE
A FIELD OF POPPIES COMES TO CHELSEA
In 2013 Australian Designer Phillip Johnson won Best Show Garden for his Trailfinders Australian Garden. In 2016 his contribution to the Chelsea Flower Show was a poignant flower exhibit that covers nearly 2000sqm of the Royal Hospital grounds in Chelsea and is made up of almost 300,000 individually hand-crocheted poppies.
In collaboration with the 5000 Poppies Project – A Community Tribute to Respect and Remembrance – Phillip Johnson Landscapes designed a spectacular tribute garden based on an installation he did for MIFS in 2015.
Creators of the 5000 Poppies project, Lynn Berry and Margaret Knight, initially set out to crochet 120 poppies to honour their fathers, who both fought in the Second World War, but this quickly escalated into a final total well in excess of quarter of a million poppies from an estimated 50,000 contributors. It captured the hearts and imaginations of people from all over the world, and inspired Phillip to present the collection at Chelsea this year with stunning results.
Images (top to bottom): The Telegraph Garden; Antithesis of Sarcophagi; Mekong Garden; The M & G Garden; Phillip Johnson’s 5000 Poppies tribute garden.
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