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RHS announces out of this world awards at Chelsea Flower Show 2007

A garden from Mars has taken the RHS Chelsea Flower Show to another dimension and picked up one of the most prestigious awards in horticulture. ‘600 Days with Bradstone’ has been pronounced Best Show Garden at the world’s finest flower show.

600 Days with Bradstone, designed by Sarah Eberle is Sarah’s second Gold at Chelsea and Bradstone’s first Best Show Garden. Bob Sweet, RHS shows organiser, said: “The garden has brought a different perspective to the show and many garden designers would have been frightened by the prospect of designing a garden from Mars. Sarah’s garden is very different and offers a new dimension to gardening.

“With the help of the European Space Agency, Sarah very seriously researched to establish which plants could survive in the galactic atmosphere. The garden features outsized cacti, alongside edible plants and the walls rely on rammed earth and aggregate, which is very similar to the technology used to build African huts. The garden is both bold and striking including brutalist hanging pods. Paving throughout the garden echoes the scorched clay polygons of Alaska’s perma-frost, which closely resemble patterns seen on Mars.”

Six further Gold Medals were awarded to Show Gardens: Andy Sturgeon for his Cancer Research UK Garden; Kate Frey for The Fetzer Sustainable Winery Garden; The Fortnum & Mason Garden, designed by Robert Myers and his first Show Garden at Chelsea. Other first timers at Chelsea who won Gold Medals were Laurie Chetwood and Patrick Collins for ‘Chetwoods Garden’ and Ulf Nordfjell for ‘A Tribute to Linnaeus’. Jinny Blom won her first Gold Medal at Chelsea for the ‘The Laurent Perrier Garden’ .

Five Silver-Gilt Medals were also announced in the Show Garden category; Chris Beardshaw for The Chris Beardshaw Garden in association with Buildbase; Mark Browning for the Fleming’s & Trailfinders Australian Garden; Diarmuid Gavin for The Westland Garden; Marcus Barnett and Philip Nixon for The Savills Garden; Gabriella Pape and Isabelle Van Groeningen for the Daily Telegraph Garden

In the small garden categories an eccentric garden centered on using a variety of objects, including boxing gloves, mannequins and a giant kitchen bottle, Patio Povera! was decreed Best Roof Garden; ‘Upstairs / Downstairs’ a private basement with a canopy of lush green foliage with interesting views and dappled light, was awarded ‘Best Chic Garden’; an intimate garden for the bustling city of Moscow, A City Haven, picked up ‘Best City Garden’ and an old farmyard garden ‘The Old Gate’ is Best Courtyard Garden.

The RHS President, Richard Buckley, chose his personal favourite; a display by UK Horticulture of British horticultural produce with fruit, vegetables, cut flowers, plants and herbs. The plants in the display that was awarded the coveted President’s Award, which is given to one exhibit in the Great Pavilion, were all grown by members of the National Farmers’ Union.

A total of 45 RHS Gold Medals were presented to floral exhibitors in the Great Pavilion where the cream of the world’s horticulture comes together under one roof. Bob Sweet said, “The warm spring has not made things easy for growers, but despite everything the weather could throw at them, the Great Pavilion is simply stunning.

“During the lead up to Chelsea Jekka McVicar has been dry brushing hundreds of red lettuces to get rid of green fly; David Root at Kelways had to put his peonies into cold store and individual strips of foam material were tied around 1,000 flower buds to prevent them blooming and Paul Chapman from British Wild Flower Plants, which grew a series of Californian flowers for The Fetzer Sustainable Winery Garden, was moving hundreds of plants around all the time from fields to glasshouses. They all pulled out the stops and the Great Pavilion, the centerpiece of the show, is once again a sumptuous array of colours and textures and filled with wonderful scents.”

Gardens and exhibits at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show are not judged against each other, they are all judged to a standard, so more than one medal from each medal category can be awarded.


Posted: 21 May 2007

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