The RHS Chelsea Flower Show is the horticultural highlight of the year in the UK, with more than 150,000 visitors heading to west London to admire the dazzling show gardens. King Charles and Queen Camilla visited the 2023 event, while television royalty was represented by, among others, Mary Berry, Joanna Lumley and Succession star Matthew Macfadyen. Here are the key trends to follow in your own green space.
Landscapes that nurture
The presence of 15 displays funded by Project Giving Back, which supports gardens for good causes, meant that the restorative qualities of outdoor space were emphasised – something we all came to appreciate during the Covid pandemic. Whether they were in a garden building, a glasshouse or hidden among the greenery, entertaining spaces were almost an afterthought, surrounded by the embrace of plants.
In praise of weeds
One man’s weed is another’s wildflower. Dandelions, oxeye daisies, red campions and buttercups found their way into many spaces, notably Cleve West’s creation of a deserted garden for Centrepoint, where a fallen birch tree with nettles growing from its trunk inspired equal amounts of muttering and admiration. The message is to relax: if the uninvited visitors are happy growing alongside your cultivated plants, look attractive and provide fodder for the birds and bees, perhaps it is time to embrace them rather than get rid of them. Forget “no-mow May”, though; there was not a single lawn in sight.