Snippets: Great Show; Great Women
For many of us the flowers are the stars of the show at Chelsea, but the designers do kind of play a big part of it. This year saw a roughly equal number of women and men designers spread across the three show garden categories. Here's a brief run-down of some of the wonderful women whose contribution to this year's RHS Chelsea Flower Show made it truly great.
Jo Thompson imagined her client as a strong independent woman when designing The Wedgewood Garden. Jo created a feminine feel to this elegant and beautiful garden using curved shapes and soft planting. The stunning colours and mesmerising shadows of The M&G Garden were brought to us by Sarah Price, who juggled designing this inspirational garden with bringing up young children.
Elsewhere in the show the lovely Robinson sisters, Susan and Margaret exhibited their extensive range of vegetables. The successful family business had previously been run by the men of the family, but now the sisters are at the helm, they are working with the public to consider something different. This year they brought wasabi!
In the Great Pavilion, the ever bubbly Floella Benjamin combined forces with Birmingham City Council to create The Windrush Foundation Garden. This was built to celebrate 70 years since the Empire Windrush vessel arrived at Tilbury, carrying over 500 Caribbean men, women and children ready to start a new life in the UK. The garden is to be relocated to Handsworth Park in Birmingham so people can continue to enjoy its unique appeal.
And finally would the Chelsea Flower Show be complete without the contagious enthusiasm of Carol Klein and her appearances in the BBC's coverage of the event? Carol has just been awarded the RHS Victoria Medal of Honour which is given for outstanding contributions to horticulture and gardening. Congratulations to Carol and all the other women who helped make this year's show so great!