I was lucky enough to get a free ticket to this year’s Chelsea flower show by helping out for a few hours at the Plant Heritage cloakroom.
I absolutely adored all the cottage style plantings in the show gardens, many given a prairie twist by adding grasses into the mix. So for 2014 we have “cottage prairie planting” – not sure if that is an existing name but it should be!
Of course I was on the lookout for herbs in particular on my visit.
Inside the Great Pavilion there is always so much to see.
Well deserved medals were on display. Hooksgreen Herbs were celebrating their Gold, and business founder and Herb Society treasurer Malcolm Dickson was in great spirits and very pleased with the level of interest the garden had received.
Outside, the show gardens were breathtaking.
My particular favourite, and voted the people’s choice, was the Hope on the Horizon garden designed in support of Help for Heroes, particularly apt in the year we are commemorating the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of the First World War. I particularly enjoyed the contrast of the billowy catmint and bronze fennel against the granite blocks. Herbs provided a sensory aspect to the garden, purposefully planted close to paths where someone passing might receive a welcome waft of fragrance: I spotted rosemary and thyme planted in this way.
In general throughout the gardens there was a decorative use of herbs as part of a mixed planting. For example fennel was often mixed in with cottage garden plants, thymes used as edging and in stone paths, and lavender in dry areas.
Looking forward to next year already!
Written by Ruth (Social Media Advisor and herb enthusiast).