Su Whale is the Interflora Blog’s resident expert florist and we sent her to Cheshire to show you her favourite bits of the RHS Flower Show Tatton Park. There’s even a video at the bottom of this post, in which Su looks at 5 of her choices in more detail.
“There are loads of fantastic displays, gardens and flowers to see at the RHS Flower Show Tatton Park, but I did manage to whittle it all down to a personal top ten.
So here goes, in no particular order…”
1. The Cancer Research Shine Garden
The Shine Garden for Cancer Research was in the form of a mini sponsored walk through Manchester’s streets at night and had a really clever contrasting planting scheme of black, purple and white flowers with a suitably urban backdrop. I loved the planted waste bins at the entrance to the garden.
2. The Visionary Garden – Red Shoes
This was fascinating; a winding path through a miniature pine forest leads you to the centrepiece, a red shed filled with fifty pairs of red shoes. The garden was based on Grimm’s fairy tale of the same name. Very thought provoking and slightly bizarre.
3. Gladioli in the Floral Marquee
A floral firework display of vibrant gladioli with colours that leapt out at you as soon you entered the Floral Marquee was irresistible. A gold medal winning display.
This spiny collection featured some truly awesome specimens. In particular the aptly named Ferocactus with 4” long spines – not something you would like bump into accidentally!
5. Artistic Alliums
The allium exhibit from Dutch growers Warmenhoven was a real eye catcher, arranged in sculptural cubes and backed by a coral glow of stately hippeastrum.
6. Children’s Gardens
These are always huge fun. This year the local primary schools gardens were based on countries of the world. They grew all the plants themselves from seeds and came up with some very inventive designs. My favourite was Spain from Whartons Primary School complete with a flamenco dancer and guitar.
7. Buzy Bees
Children also featured in the British Beekeepers’ Association exhibit. Under 5’s dressed in bee costumes to plant up bee friendly plants. A reminder of how important it is to encourage these marvellous insects into your garden.
8. Floral book
Local councils get a chance to air their horticultural skills at Tatton Park. One that caught my eye was ‘A Novel Approach’ by Bournemouth Borough Council. In particular the incredibly detailed open book, made entirely from green and red sempervivums.
9. Jurassic Park
You never quite know what you are going to find at Tatton, but coming across a 12’ high Raptor was still rather unexpected. He (or she) was the main attraction at Chester Zoo’s garden ‘Dinosaurs at Large!’. Fortunately it wasn’t real, although it had a pretty convincing roar…
10. NAFAS Gold
Finally, to the floristry. There were some amazing sights in the Floral Design Marquee. My winning display was from NAFAS North West who had designed and put together in just five weeks a Fairy Tale exhibit of Peter Pan’s voyage to Never Never Land. Beautifully executed it won a well deserved gold.
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