30 June – 5 July 2015
By Dieneke Ferguson
I had never been to the Hampton Court Flower Show, so this year, after having visiting the Chelsea Flower Show (also organised by the Royal Horticultural Society) I decided to visit this show as well which is in a beautiful location next to Hampton Court.
This year was their 25th anniversary which was celebrated through different initiatives at the show. The VertiGarden Celebration Cake was custom built to celebrate the flower show’s 25th birthday. It featured annual foliage plants arranged and planted in VertiGarden’s planting modules. The show’s anniversary was marked by 25 candles and were part of the framework that supported 216 planting modules and a total 3,456 plants.
An average of 130,000 people attend the show every year, and this year organisers expect this number to be higher than ever.
In total there were 30 gardens arranged into four different categories:
- Show and World gardens
- Conceptual Gardens
- Historic Gardens
- Summer Gardens
There was also a Grow Zone with plants from all over the world, all of which were for sale. And the Inspire Zone offers new ideas in gardening.
The Festival of Roses had an impressive display of roses.
Scarecrows – Celebration of History
The Scarecrow Competition brought together infant and primary schools involved in the RHS Campaign for School Gardening in the south east of England.
They were asked to create a scarecrow using elements of recycled materials and plants, the figures were all inspired by history and featured everything from Vikings to suffragettes.
Watching over the show was a giant scarecrow standing at 7m tall. #scarecrowselfie
The Tea Party
Designer: Charlie Bloom
This garden celebrates the 150th anniversary of Lewis Carrol’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. It is a celebration of colour, texture and shape. But mostly it reflects the great British love of a tea party in all its eccentric glory.
Winnie the Pooh
Designer: Anthea Guthrie
Best Historic Garden
Winnie the Pooh, written by A A Milne, made his first public appearance in 1925. Winnie has a love of discovery and sets off on his imagined worldwide travels. The garden pictures A A Milne’s wood shelter at the end of a large country garden.
SHOW AND WORLD GARDENS
MacMillan Legacy Garden
Designer: Ann-Marie Powell Gardens
This garden is a contemporary interpretation of an edge-of-woodland space. The pod like structure offers a relaxing space to site, and from where to contemplate life’s journey. It is designed as a community space and the green and white represent the brand colours of MacMillan.
The Turkish Ministry of Culture & Tourism: Garden of Paradise
Designer: Nilufer Danis, Lotus Design Studio
Best World garden and Gold Award
This garden has been influenced by early Turkish Islamic gardens of the 10th century featuring elements such as strong geometric architecture, a pavilion to provide share and fountains.
An added bonus of visiting the Hampton Court Flower Show is that, time permitting, you can return by boat all to Westminster. It is a 3 hour journey but it is worthwhile. The day I went it was a hot summery day which enabled me to bake in the sun whilst enjoying the changing faces of the Thames, its habitat and surroundings.