The 83rd RHS Chelsea flower show is well underway, opening yesterday to sell out crowds. Due to popular demand, the show was extended for one extra day, to which tickets also sold out quickly. Touts on the internet are selling un-oficial tickets for as much as £125. That's more than 400% MORE than the retail value of the top priced tickets.
Despite this, the show, which features Rubish alongside the Roses is attracting Royals and Celebrities. Michael Caine, Rod Stewart, Gloria Hunniford, the Countess of Wessex and the Duke of York, and The Duchess of Cornwall was carrying out her first solo engagement as a member of the Royal family.
For the first time in the history of the show, the Chelsea Pensioners have their own garden - patch of old turf has been lifted from the grounds of the Royal Hospital Chelsea to form the basis of a wildflower meadow with dandelions, buttercups and scabious. The village duck pond (without ducks) has very lush marginal planting, which provides a natural watering hole. The Garden also features a country pub, a bank of poppies and a village green, representing the Soldiers dream of home - to mark the 60th anniversary of the end of the second world war. The garden won the ultimate accolade, being named Best in Show, and no one can deny it was deserved.
In the Cancer research garden, Gloria Hunnford presented the Rosa"Caron Keating" in memory of her daughter who lost the battle to breast cancer last year.
The Cancer research Garden was a contemporary space using dramatic planting and bright flowers, which surround a central unfurling spiral of carved granite stepping stones, reflecting the idea of discovery. As the focal point of the garden, these gentle stones evoke a theme of progress and reflect the ongoing steps that Cancer Research UK has taken in funding groundbreaking research.
80s pop darling, Kim Wilde took a Gold medal with her courtyard garden, inspired by a Cumbrian fellside. A garden for quiet contemplation carved out of a sloping plot of land in a fellside setting. Cumbria's romantic landscape is the inspiration for this garden, and a rivulet falling from the fell is harnessed as a simple water feature.
All materials such as slate, timber and willow are produced from sustainable sources, or are reclaimed materials, creating a garden which both works with and contrasts against the undisputable influence of Mother Nature.