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Chelsea Flower Show 2015
It is always a thrill to go to Chelsea – to see the extraordinary imagination of the garden designers and the ways in which familiar plants and trees can be brought together for special effect. However, there is always the extra interest and excitement to see where our products have been used, hopefully to good effect, on the various show gardens, Grand Pavilion displays and trade stands.
This year surpassed all others and planning was needed to make my way to 33 different locations to view the wildflower turf, sedum mats and WowGrass the installation of which had been overseen in the hectic previous week by the tireless Roger Moore – an inspiring ambassador for the company in this exacting market.
To see a Gold, Silver Gilt or Silver medal displayed on every one of the 12 Show Gardens we had supplied was a wonderful sight, and there is no denying that an area of pristine grass, with no evident joins and no signs of mud or curling edges, just gives the final and important touch to an award winning display. Two Gold medal gardens, Adam Frost’s Homebase garden, and Marcus Barnett’s Telegraph garden, had large areas of WowGrass which to my biased eye really adds to the Wow factor.
Being proudly a Yorkshire based company, it is a special privilege to be involved in the Welcome to Yorkshire garden. Designer Lee Bestall, who had visited our nursery previously, was clearly delighted with the effect of our wildflower turf, and even more delighted with his Silver Medal.
Nowhere is sedum displayed to greater effect than on Ishihara Kazuyuki’s Paradise on Earth garden. Another Gold for him for this stunning oasis of calm enveloped by mosses, sedums and trickling water, means that he is deservedly heading for a main avenue show garden next year.
How good it was to see our old friend Alan Gardener, with whom we did a Fresh Garden three years ago, on the main avenue with his Viking Cruises Show Garden. I have to say it was my favourite with the lovely natural planting under graceful Himalayan birches, looking as it had been there for years. The stunning stainless steel sculpture by the talented Patrick Hirst evoked the prow of a Viking ship in the most subtle way. Alan is fronting a Channel 4 series on Autistic Gardening starting in June which will be well worth looking out for.
The driftwood sculptures on James Doran-Webb’s trade stand are surely the most photographed non floral items at the show. Yet again, the vivid grass background shows them off to best effect.
A warm welcome is always assured on Mike Speller’s metal sculptures stand. Mike has used our product for countless years and he is always exhorting other exhibitors to use Lindum to brighten up and enhance their stands. His delicate sculpture set within a huge, brightly polished copper concave dish was the centrepiece of his best ever stand. Andy Gage, the entrepreneurial farmer who has made fire pits an art form, produced a lovely stand this year, helped by our wildflower turf, and showed that he had learned from his first experience last year how to make a real impression. His challenge now is keeping up with the orders!
One could spend a whole day in the Grand Pavilion alone, and three Gold medal and one Silver medal award displays had used Lindum, the most eye catching being the dazzling colours transporting you to Thailand on the Nong Nooch stand. Again, there is nothing to rival bold swathes of green to offset the far eastern rainbow effect.
It was good to see Wayne Grills and his team on the BALI stand. Chelsea is an ideal opportunity to promote the importance of using properly accredited contractors and suppliers when large investments in landscaping are undertaken.
And so, another Chelsea day is over. It has been great working again with such talented people, both designers and contractors, and for me a joy to see our products put to such good effect.