Sunday, 8 July 2012

Hampton Court Flower Show

On Tuesday I went to the Hampton Court Flower Show. I didn’t quite know what to expect as I had never been on an RHS members day (usually I go with the rest of the hoi polloi on the weekend). It was also rather wet, and as I left the flat with my pink trolly and umbrella Steven did suggest I also take my pink poncho in case of torrents...
I was going with Peter, as we are developing a civilised habit of visiting plant shows together...the last one being Brum last year where we both encouraged each other to buy everything! This year was similar although whenever I turned my back Peter seemed to have grabbed an armful of plants and have his card out to buy...
We didn’t get in until 4, as we had 3pm tickets and traffic was grim, however I had managed to get into Hampton Court Palace for a wander which was very civilised.....the gardens at the palace are well worth checking out in themselves, although it’s not quite as big as I remember as a 10yr old on school trips....
I always like Hampton Court as it is big, the show gardens have improved year on year, and it is a great buying opportunity (you can’t buy plants at Chelsea).
I think I need my sunglasses...
The theme seemed to be all about relaxing in a sunken/naturalistic surround with a green and white colour palate as this is what a lot of the show gardens seemed to be like. Being more of a foliage person I was happy as there was lots of green everywhere, however I don’t think it had the same impact as last year as there were some really memorable gardens like the fabulous Thai Klong one.  The show also seemed a bit smaller, with less exhibitors, however this could just have been me.
Everyone needs a conceptual garden

I liked these bottles,an easy thing to do....just try and avoid your neighbours thinking you are a wino

Green walls are still the in vogue thing to have

Have a volcanic vent in your garden? now you know what to do!

The highlight for me is always the floral marquee and it didn’t disappoint. Loads of different nurseries with a very high spec. I felt quite controlled and didn’t buy that much stuff (well beyond a trolley full including a tropical looking water lily, another Dahlia Imperialis to pad things out, a giant Crocosmia, Aralia elator, a quirky persicaria and saxifrage, and Physygelius ‘devils tears’)
Gorgeous Cannas *swoon*

The Dahlias are appealing to my inner Barbara Cartland..... huge blooms and solves the problem of flower arranging as you just put one in a vase!
So a good day and chance to be inspired, buy buy, buy and drink the most expensive Pimms in the world. Now I just need to find a home for the plants!

The other bit of the show, such as the flower arranging and roses was not particulalrly to my taste, but it did fill me with merriment 


I thought this was a giant cat from a distance but it was a wedding dress!

Something for your front lawn?

Finally a few pictures from my own garden taken by the fabulous Sue who is a very talented designer and photographer!


  1. We really enjoyed Hampton Court when we visited last Saturday. Such a colossal flower show, you need two days if you want to see everything thoroughly!

  2. Indeed, and 2 car boots wouldnt go amiss either!

  3. Sadly, I succumbed to the spend, spend, spend impulse and didn't get beyond the Floral Marquee (except to queue at the bank for cash). I made three trips back to the car with stuff - I didn't have the energy after all that to go and look at the gardens. So thanks for your post, Clive!

  4. Well its good to support the economy in difficult times! your garden must be looking fabulous now, I cant think where you manage to squeeze things in? dug up more of the lawn?!

    I had a nice long chat with the Hart Canna people who remembered you well (I was saying how fabulous your post on them was!)