Did I enjoy it? Hell yes. I always do. It’s too busy compared with say Malvern where I went for the first time earlier this month. There’s polite and impolite pushing and shoving as only us Brits do to get to the show gardens. Some hilarious comments about the gardens by people who pretend that they know what they are talking about. But even to a novice like me it sounds like …..
It’s expensive. It’s full of people because it’s Chelsea – not for the plants or the planting. There for the occasion. It’s the start of a social summer whirl. But I love it for all its many faults.
I’m neither a gardener or a designer or a horticulturist. So what do I know. But I garden. I know what I like. I’m a very lucky man to be able to garden two very different gardens. I make mistakes. I don’t plant deep enough I’m told. I don’t design – just plant what I like. Where I like and I make mistakes.
Shows like this give me ideas. Ideas of plants – of planting – the opportunity of getting new seeds and then talking to those who really know how to garden. Did I spend money. Only on gardening gloves some seeds and a host of plant catalogues.
I love the gardens – both the main show and the Artisan gardens. This year I was disappointed in the latter. Usually they are some of my favourites as they seem accessible. For me this year they lacked something. But I liked this one. Interesting. Practical. Colourful.
We all have differing opinions on the planting. The plants. The structure. The colour. That’s good- isn’t it? I loved the planting in Rosy Hardys garden – I like colour. Jo Thomsons garden was beautiful. I didn’t see Diarnunds Twirling trees but I liked his garden and the planting. Cleeves garden was lovely too. They are all different and appeal to people on different levels.
I love the depth and breadth of the plants and the stands in the Marquee. Hardys always puts on a great stand and deservedly had their 21st gold. The sweet peas were awesome as usual and i couldn’t resist a few seeds . But this year there didn’t seem to be the “plant”!that was everywhere. In every garden. On every stand. Or maybe it just passed me by.
So it’s over for another year. Finished off with an alcoholic beverage with friends at the close of the day discussing what we liked. What we didn’t and what we bought.
Will I go next year. I suspect I will. I’ve been going for over 25 years. So why change a habit of a lifetime.