Thursday 4 July 2019

Show gardens at Hampton Court Palace Garden Festival 2019

Beautiful day for the Hampton Court Palace Garden Festival - where the predominant theme over all the show gardens is the future for gardens and managed space in the face of climate change and weather extremes. Several of the others explore how gardens can help with physical and mental rehabilitation.
My personal favourites are the Stop and Pause garden, which I think brings a real sense of balance and harmony to a small garden in a very accessible way. And of course, the Drought Tolerant Garden created in homage to Beth Chatto, who died last year. This garden was attracting huge crowds today (almost more than for the RHS garden co-created by the Duchess of Cambridge) and deservedly so - the planting is beautiful throughout, just as at the original Beth Chatto gardens in Elmstead Market.

Dream of the Indianos garden, which reflects the style of the gardens created by migrants returning to northern Spain at the end of the 19th century after years in the Caribbean. 

You can see many of these gardens throughout Galicia, Asturias and Cantabria on the north coats of Spain: the signature palms, and profusion of hydrangeas and agapanthus are unmistakable markers of the historic northern Spanish garden.

Beautiful planting in the Drought Tolerant garden, which attracted huge crowds throughout the day.

The Drought Tolerant garden - a tribute to Beth Chatto with many of the plants echoing those in her Dry Garden.

I loved the distinctive planting, especially this juxtaposition of bright pink Astilbe and Asarum europaeum under the birch trees (if there is a tree of the show this year, it would be Betula and all its varieties)

The Stop and Pause Garden, inspired by meditation and the various ways in which it can be practised. A lovely calm space, beautifully balanced.

Now this is how to build a vertical succulent garden: a show-stopping display at Surreal Succulents in the Floral Marquee

Another garden with planting designed to adapt to increasingly dry and unpredictable conditions: fascinatingly diverse planting in the Thames Water Flourishing Future Garden. 

A beautiful, accessible space with lovely planting: the Urban Pollinator garden concentrates on plants which encourage visiting pollinators, especially bees.

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