Today is the last day of this year’s Hampton Court Palace Flower Show, and what a show it has been. I had the pleasure of visiting on Tuesday with my sister, Grandma, and our family friend Andy. You might recognise Kayleigh and Andy from previous flower show posts, as they usually let me tag along.
We explored Chelsea Flower Show earlier this year, and have been visiting the Hampton Court Flower Show together since 2014, but this was the first year that my Grandma (whose garden is divine) joined us on the venture. We hope she’ll now be a permanent fixture to the RHS Flower Show Gang!
There was one real stand-out garden for me – A Dog’s Life Garden by The Dog’s Trust, which was designed to mark the charity’s 125th anniversary. The garden featured a gorgeous colour palette of purples and yellows, with bright origami-style dog figurines dotted around the flower beds.
The garden also featured a long clear stretch of water, perfect for doggy paddling, as well as tunnels and sniffer tracks for dog’s to explore. The garden wasn’t the only thing that wowed me however, as The Dog’s Trust had also brought along some of their trusty four-legged friends.
This is Evie, the most adorable (and soft) greyhound that I’ve ever met. I quickly became besotted with Evie, and would have liked to take her home with me there and then. Alas, Evie is already reserved, and my current circumstances wouldn’t really allow me to have a dog, but maybe one day…!
My second favourite garden was The Austin Garden, designed by Sadie May Studios, which was one of a trio of gardens celebrating different regions of the USA. I loved the planting in this garden, and the use of rusty corrugated iron, scaffold poles, and corten steel which gave it a real rugged feel.
As well as the show gardens, the show featured a range of exhibitors as always. One that particularly stood out for me was The Posh Shed Company, who had sponsored every show garden so that each designer had somewhere to keep their belongings. They were also selling ‘posh’ bird houses!
Now that I’m a home owner, I enjoy looking at different specimens, and thinking about which plants I’d like to try in my garden. I’m a sucker for anything colourful, but I’m also on the look-out for shade-loving plants. It’s handy having keen gardeners and garden designers around to point things out to you!
Thankfully we had glorious sunshine all day, and so we could meander around at our leisure. We had a relaxing lunch sat on deckchairs with our feet tapping to the sound of jazz from one of the live band stands. Although they had ran out of sandwiches, there was a plentiful supply of Pimm’s!
All in all, we had a fantastic day. Hampton Court offers such a beautiful setting for the show that it would be hard not to enjoy it. Even the walk to and from the show entrance is stunning. We saw a family of swans (with signets) and even deer further up along the river. Did you go this year?
What was your favourite garden? I already can’t wait for next year, although I’m sure the designers will be pleased to have a little break now it’s over. Well done to everyone involved!