A pleasure to visit RHS Chelsea 2019 yesterday for The Spectator Magazine, making sense of all the woodlands, wildernesses and environmental worries this year, and noting some very beautiful planting features. Among the highlights were various – and somewhat feral – forms of Rodgersia, Echium, Persicaria and Verbascum, pioneering plants of wonderfully rogue character.
As I concluded in the piece, ‘Show gardens of years past treated visitors to a spectacle of ornate, often innovative back gardens; inspiration that, at a push (and with money to burn), might be applied back home. Currently presented among the grand plots are depictions of yet wilder scenes, natural landscapes skilfully mirrored with light, sympathetic embellishment. Commendable or wildly off-brief, the Flower Show has responded in its own way to the current environmental conundrum, lamenting a paradise-increasingly-lost through Arcadian motifs reminiscent of 18th Century romanticism.’ In other words, a comfort blanket of bucolic British countryside amidst an unsettling time.
Read the full article here.