15 June 2016

Chelsea Flower Show

I've had a draft about the Chelsea Flower Show for a few weeks, but things have been busy since then so I've not had the opportunity to catch up with this. So I thought I would share this now.

Sarah bought me the tickets for the Chelsea Flower Show for my birthday, last November.  This wasn't a surprise as I am an RHS member and had to order the tickets on her behalf. We were also able to go on one of the member days, so it was a little less crowded on the Wednesday we went than on the public days.

We travelled up to London on Tuesday and had a little time to go to the Chelsea Physic Garden, just down the road from the Royal Hospital. This is a little oasis of calm in a big city as the walled garden cuts out a lot of noise and also created a microclimate for the plants. This garden was founded in the 17th century by Hans Sloane (after whom Sloane Square is named) for the Worshipful Society of Apothecaries.  We had a tour around the garden, which was arranged in areas for healing, poisonous plants, tropical plants and plants for other uses in one half of the garden.   The other part of the garden had plants arranged in their genus families, a small vegetable garden, useful plants (useful for manufacturing, dyeing, etc) and perfumed garden.

We stayed in a hotel near West Kensington station so it didn't take us too long to get from Sloane Square back to there.

The next day was the Flower Show itself.  It was just a case of following everyone from Sloane Square station to the Royal Hospital.  It was amazing, so much to take in so many things to see although we had seen a couple of the BBC programmes covering the show (not too many, didn't want to spoil what we were going to see).  Not long after going in we came across the poppy garden in front of the Hospital.

This was just amazing, hundreds and thousands of knitted and crochets poppies from around the world,  which was originally to commemorate the Australian soldiers killed in the First World War and had just grown in 3 years with poppies from around the world.

I could include so many photos that I took of the day, but personally my favourite gardens were the Modern Slavery Garden, where the colours of the flowers changed around the garden.  The doors were to represent the hidden slavery that happens today, behind closed doors and looking forward to a day when there are no slaves.

Another was God's Own County - A garden for Yorkshire, which I found later although it didn't win a Gold Medal, it was the People's Choice.  I just loved the stained glass background, which was inspired by one of the windows in York Minster

Or perhaps it was the quilt maker in me that liked this.

In the Grand Pavillion I took a lot of photos of Clematis

Aren't they just gorgeous, the colours are so lush

And we also joined the queue for the Pullman carriage that visually transported you from the garden to tropical ferns on the exit out.

 Time for a selfie!

More things to see

Sarah and I had a really brilliant day although the weather was cold and could not decide whether to rain or not (but it didn't in the end) and got back to Poole late but happy.

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