Alan Titchmarsh and Carol Klein talk to the gold medal-winning designers and exhibitors in the Great Pavilion and reveal who has won the Chelsea 2012 'best in show' award.
Browse content similar to Episode 6. Check below for episodes and series from the same categories and more!
For one week of the year, a small pocket of busy Central London
ferments a scent so strong you'd be forgiven for thinking you'd
wandered into paradise. Right now the Royal Hospital Grounds are
bursting with the finest plants, flowers, shrubs and trees on the
planet. And for the folk that brought them here, today is the
most important day of the year, if not their career. Because behind
the blooms and the buzz lies an ultimate prize that every single
exhibitor in this showground craves... A Chelsea gold. It's
medals day, and we know who's woken up to the sweet smell of success.
Growing for gold - we'll be revealing who's wowed the judges in
the show gardens and Great Pavilion. Why are you weeping? I don't know.
Chelsea upstaged - actress Stephanie Cole shares her love of
gardening. And we meet the design duo causing
a few ripples. We are aiming for emotional engagement.
Welcome to the RHS Chelsea flower show supported by M&G investments.
The sunshine has come out and everyone is happy. There is a real
carnival atmosphere. A have never sat at Chelsea before with a
fairground helter-skelter behind me. Their skirts are riding up rather
high. How you had a go yet? I am walking down. He got a special
award for it, the silver-gilt medal. Most creative garden in the show.
don't think anybody would dispute that. When the pensioners lined up
for it, it was quite aside. It's been a rollercoaster of a day
because emotions run high when medals are at stake. Nicki Chapman
rose with the sun to share the joy and pain across the showground as
the RHS results were hand delivered. We are just waiting for the car RHS
ladies to arrive because this is what it is all about a day - the
much coveted gold medal. Congratulations.
Well done. Has it been a really hard Chelsi? Everybody knows it has.
It's been a nightmare. Thanks. medal. This means a lot, doesn't
How did you do? Fantastic, we won gold. A congratulations. You got
cold. Alan will be delighted. can stop winding me up about it now.
Congratulations - gold medal. done. I love this job. I get all
the kisses. How do you feel? Elated. We are just heading for the artisan
gardens now. Howard do you feel? If gutted. Are you? A to be honest,
What an amazing morning's work, tremendous.
It's been a bumper year for golds in the Great Pavilion, with 58
exhibits impressing the judges. And the same goes for the show gardens
where nine out of the 16 won gold this year. Earlier, Carol and I
went to take a look at two that couldn't be more different. Jihae
Hwangs was over the moon when she discovered she had won a medal for
the demilitarised zone, celebrating the anniversary of the Korean War.
Some symbolic gardens I can take or leave, but this one really works.
It is the area of no man's land between two frontiers. It is a
savage area, but one which is silent. There are also lots of
buttons sprinkled through the path and the stream, there is Barb Wire,
but throughout it all, nature is conquering where man can't. The
stream runs through, linking the areas. Barbed-wire it is there, but
so are climbing plants, which scramble over them. As you look
down, you can seashells in the past that have been abandoned. It shows
that although man might be involved in conflict, nature doesn't
understand and it grows on regardless. If you looked for a
common theme in the gold medal gardens in Chelsea, it would be
attention to detail, and this garden has it in abundance from the
rusted wire netting to the plans pushing up through the detritus of
war. It is incredibly moving. This is Adam Frost's rural news
garden, inspired by the poet John Clare's country walks. It is a
gold-medal exhibit and it is hardly surprising. There is a wonderful
This effect has been achieved by the gravelly path, but it is in the
planting... The garden really gets its character. Plants like this - a
double version of our meadow buttercup. Here it is living in
close harmony, mingling with geranium, aquilegias, and one of my
favourite grassy plants. The whole thing is planted naturally, and
there are colonies of plants mingling together everywhere. The
geranium over here, which is a native, it is really pulling in the
bumble bees because the real purpose of this garden is to supply
food and shelter for wildlife. It really does that. There is close
observation of nature here, even though a lot of the plants that are
used are cultivated plants, and everywhere there are these native
trees. Things like hazels and beech trees, and wild cherry. Once you
want to -- what you want to do is enjoy their shade.
The pressure to produce the next big design in horticulture is
paramount here at Chelsea. Design team John Warland and Sim Flemons
may be strangers to Main Avenue but they've made a bit of a name for
themselves at Hampton Court with their thought provoking and brave
conceptual gardens. After pocketing four golds, they've now set their
sights on pushing the boundaries here. We joined them earlier in the
month in Cornwall, a land of labyrinths and lush tree ferns to
talk about their very first Chelsea show garden. Labyrinth is extremely
special, they have been with us for thousands of years. Everyone thinks
a labyrinth and a maze is the same thing but they are very different.
The Maze has many choices, but in a labyrinth there is only one way it
in and one way out. You mind is opening to being part of the ripple.
It is a place to be safe and to be alone with your thoughts, a place
of balance. Myself and Sim went to study garden design many years ago.
It is in the show gardens where we collaborate and create more thought
provoking, inspiring, challenging and possibly controversial spaces.
In general it is probably more myself that comes up with a stream
of crazy ideas, and Sim has good taste, rings it in, puts in the
fine details and get his hands dirtier than me. John is the one
with the ideas. My strength is in the plants, how they relate to the
garden and relate to each other. The main principle of the design is
the ripple Poole, and how the ripple effect can cause perpetual
motion, and that is the start of the garden. The garden is designed
as a personal space, really designed for almost one person to
enjoy their time. If you are going to walk the labyrinth path, it
would be alone, it is a place to contemplate and reflect, and
consider your own actions. Hopefully to create a sense of calm
where you can really open your mind. We have been lucky enough to come
to Cornwall to see these beautiful tree ferns, probably some of the
oldest in the country. When we have been walking through the tree ferns,
just to stop and look up, it is emotionally resonant and peaceful
to enjoy the light. It is a sense of nurture and end closure, and
that is the essence that we would like to translate the Chelsea
Garden. Where possible with our planting, we aim for the most
naturalistic style as well. Something you might see here in the
Lost Gardens, but we are trying to capture that essence and style, and
it is to create a calming atmosphere within the space.
main plant is the tree fern, which we have used to give the sense of
an closure and protection. though we enjoy the filter of light,
it is the trunks slightly quirky and off-centre, and that is what we
are looking for. Imperfect nature. It is our first Chelsea and the
pressure is quite high. We have been told the garden is quite small,
we have got to do a lot of landscaping and to his exquisite
which puts a lot of pressure on. The medal is not everything. It is
always lovely to get a gold medal. We put everything into our gardens,
but at the end of the day it is actually rising the design that
gives us pleasure. We are not trying to design what I call a
vanilla garden, we are hoping to create something of beauty but it
is about the ripple effect as a whole, and whether the garden goes
on to create a ripple effect amongst the viewer. An emotional
engagement, that is what we are hoping for. Here at the centre of
the labyrinth, a pulsating water. Are you happy with how it came
together? Pleased with the result, the medal could have been better
but this garden is all about the message. Silver is... Everyone
wants gold. It is frustrating. had won four golds at Hampton Court
so maybe it our expectations were high but it has been a great
learning curve. Tell me about its transportation here it - does it
always come as a surprise when it comes together? As a prize, but
mainly a relief to see the dream come true. It is just a massive
relief. The ethos from your point of view - what you want people to
feel when they come inside here? Starting with the labyrinth garden,
you only walk one way. So it leaves you to the middle? Yes, then you
can contemplate and watched the ripple effect. What do people think
to it? They love it. It is a time to think, to contemplate, to
contemplate an act of kindness. talk about the triumph of winning
gold, but we have to talk about people who do not win gold. Will
you come back? Come will definitely come back but we won't compromise
the way we do it. We like to innovate and provoke thought, and
debate, and not everyone loves it but we will be back with gusto next
year. Using the power of flowers to highlight charitable causes through
horticulture is an innovative way of delivering thought provoking
messages, and at Chelsea you have the world as an audience. This year,
to celebrate their 90th birthday, the charity Furzey Gardens has been
working with Chris Beardshaw to create a garden that celebrates the
achievements of its learning and disability garden team. Rachel went
to find out if he and the students Chris, you said that you thought
this garden wouldn't do well, it wouldn't be liked, because it had
rhododendrons and azaleas and they are out of fashion and it who won a
gold medal. Everybody loved it. know. I should have had more faith.
When was the last time you saw rode ded Rons -- rhododendrons and
azaleas. It is not just about the big and blousey ones. This one has
a wonderful fragrance. And more subtle ones. There is one for every
spot if you have the right soil. Let's hope they are looked on more
favourably. How have the students responded to the success you've had
with the garden? The project started last year. We walked around
the garden, we selected the plant material. Tried to give them an
idea of the pressures of growing and even just delivering into the
Chelsea showground. The whole thing is a logistics nightmare. They
propagated plants for us, tended plants. They helped us plant and
collect pots and thatch the roof. To then be able to turn around this
morning and say, we've got a gold medal, breathtaking. Priceless.
Wonderful. I've heard there are some hidden gems on this garden.
Where are they? What's hidden? There are a few things. The
students have been involved in creating the stained glass leaves
hanging from the roof, but I suspect you are talking about the
fairies from Furzey. They are secreted around the garden at
Furzey, so we brought a few of them with us. They hitched a ride. If
you look at that tree stump, there's a fairy door. The children
run through the woods and leave a gift outside the fairy doors.
never thought I would hear the day when I heard you say you believed
in fairies. I'm a believer! have to hand it to the designers
who exhibit here for putting themselves through the stress of
building a Chelsea garden. It's hard going for those who do it year
after year, never mind a first timer. One man knows this only too
well. He's usually standing with me commenting on everyone else's
gardens. This year, after years of deliberating, he's finally designed
his own. Joe, tell them what you've got. I've got a gold Alan. Excuse
me... I know! My first Chelsea, and I've done it. You can't rib me
about it any more. You have got to stop now, because we are equal.
There is only one way down from here - down. So, are you happy with
it, that's the thing. Did it turn out the way you wanted to?
course I'm happy. I'm so happy, I couldn't have dreamed for a better
turnout. The plants were great. The build was really good. Can I do my
Oscar-winning speech? No, the people will switch off. I know you
are grateful. It couldn't have looked better. I Amex at that
timeic about my garden. The judges often want to know who the garden
is for. I want people to project themselves into this garden. That
was one of the feed-back from the judges, I didn't put on my brief it
was for a young couple, a married couple or whatever. I wanted people
who come to the show to imagine themselves in this space and
hopefully think they might want it. If there is bravery about this
garden it is these arches, which are quite dominant. And bright.
Brave. Were you determined to push the boundaries? You've got to be
bold. That's what the Chelsea gardens are about. It is no good
coming and doing what every we've seen before. I like bold, masculine
designs. It always looks so harsh with the boulders and the trees,
but as soon as you put the plants in you have a strong framework to
soften it up and get movement into it. And in this case you've got a
gold medal-winning garden. Well done. I taught him all I know. When
you show a garden at Chelsea, you When you show a garden at Chelsea,
you have to be prepared for it to be viewed by the world's media and
to listen to anyone and everyone having an opinion on a design
you've sweated over for months. But it can be just as daunting showing
someone your own back garden for the first time. After all, it's a
personal space. Last week we persuaded actress Stephanie Cole to
let us take a look over her garden fence and what we found was a
garden very much like her - utterly I live in a malt house. The main
bit of which is 17th century and the other bit is 18th century.
About a third of the garden is wild, then probably just under a third is
vegetable and fruit. The rest is lawn and flower beds. I have a
swimming pool. Through this arch we come into my wild bit of my garden.
When it's sunny it's wonderful lying here in the dappled shade.
The birds come into the trees and they don't know you're there and
you can watch them very quietly as they go about their business. I
feel as if I'm part of their world when I'm quietly here lying on my
hammock or just sitting. Passing my log pile, specifically for bugs and
insects of all sorts, this is the hawthorn, which grows cheek by jowl
with the white beam. They are both wonderful British plants. Look how
beautiful that is. All the blue of the forget-me-nots. They are so
vigorous. You pull them up and there they are next year looking
Albright and glorious just at a time when you need it. For me it is
a joy and delight. This is the sort of fruit and veg section. You can
see two pears and a lovely Victoria plum, apples, fig free, rhubarb.
I've just seen how well my gooseberries are doing, and
raspberries. And down there strawberries. My mother was a great
gardener, which tends to occasionally put you off, but I did
love helping with picking the fruit. So I just feel I have an affinity
with fruit trees. This is my magic apple tree. It's very, very old.
It's two apple trees. Obviously the rootstock has grown from one of
them. This side is a very old sheep's head apple. You know what a
green pepper looks like. That's what they look like but slightly
paler green. The other side has tiny deep red, very sweet apples. I
have no idea what sort they are but I love them. In the spring hate a
wonderful hat of clematis.S that dies back the apple blossom comes.
I adore it. It's my pride and joy. What am I hoping to see at Chelsea
this year? Well, all of the obvious things, but I do have my problem
areas. Here we have one of the big problems in my garden. There was
this huge willow. This gradually over the winter rotted. The nettles,
the sweet nettles and cowslips and things love it, but nothing else. I
don't know what to do here. I'm very keen to get ideas about that.
Both plant ideas and structural ideas. We now come to the next
slightly smaller problem area. For the first few years I had frogs and
all sorts of things, but now I don't quite know what I've done
wrong. It is a bit niminy isn't it, a bit niminy piminy. Again Chelsea
will give me great ideas I think. And I'm determined to keep all my
nettles and dandy lions, because they're so beautiful when they come
out. I love leaving things to come up where they grow naturally. If
they like growing there, that's great by me, because they are all
Stephanie, this garden is very clearly very important to you, an
important part of your life. It is actually. I really love it. I
particularly love the wild part, because when I was a child, I was
brought up in the country, and I remember learning at a very young
age the name of wild flowers, like herb Robert and things like that,
and that wonderful smell. God, I love that smell. Some people hate
it. I know they do, but the scents of Devon covered lanes, I love it.
I've got piles of log where is all The Beatles and things can go. It
is really important to me and I love it. Is it important in your
work that you have that to go back to? Actors are always away a lot.
know, and that's one of the problems. When I get back I do go
into panic mode, as the task seems to enormous. Die have someone to
help me, thank God, or it would be a wilderness. Sometimes I have to
admit to you and the viewers that I do suspect myself of not having
green fingers but black thumbs. I will put things in lovingly and
with great care. They might flourish for a while and then
suddenly... But I don't despair. If they are not dead I will try and
coax them back into life. I'm not a good gardener. But you love it,
that's the important thing. I do love it. A gardener said to me
yesterday, he said, "I've realised the difference between an expensive
plant and a weed." I said, "What's that?" And he said if you pull up
back whereas a weed will. I've seen you in Coronation Street. Are you
having a ball? I've been very lucky in my 50-odd years but Corrie is
the icing on the cake. Everybody is, I love them. I love them to bits.
And my character is so beautifully written for. I have a ball. It is a
bit, I was going to say something I don't think I can say, but very
fast working. KBS I think we call it. That's the one. It is faction,
but that's OK, because something strange happens, and you will
understand this, as you love acting. When you have a long rehearsal time,
that's what we all want but with Corrie it is very fast. What
happens, particularly if you have had a lot of experience, it happens
in the back part of your brain, so you come out with it like that and
actually it's better. Chris per. Extraordinary. We let you loose on
this showground here with all the goodies. We will find out later
exactly what you got out of it. For now, Stephanie Cole, thank you.
Bless you. Whilst many gasp at the grand
garden designs outside, the die- hard plantsmen and women head
straight for the Great Pavilion to gush over the floral glories. It's
the size of two football pitches and full of premiership plantsmen
and women who, like everyone else on Medals Day, are eager to impress
the judges. Some of them have been exhibiting here for decades and can
boast a gold every year, because theyve become the masters at
Blackmore and Langdon have been exhibiting at Chelsea since the
show first began in 1913. That makes next year their centenary.
This year has been especially difficult, with cold temperatures
and lowlight levels, but nonetheless their plants are as
good as ever. In fact they've all been given a sort of freshness just
by the lateness of the season. Avon Bulbs have been coming here
for 33 years and during that time they've won more than 25 gold
medals. One of the best things about their stand is this
incredible combinations that they make. I really love this one. These
big blue spikes of camassia, in contrast with that orange tulip.
Not only does it have this immensely graceful shape but it
also has perfume. Sometimes it is all about shade.
These intimate beautiful woodland areas, crammed full with delicious
plants. These are woodland edges recreate it, thick with some of the
most special plants you could ever wish to meet. One of them in
wish to meet. One of them in wish to meet. One of them in
particular - this orchid. In the winter it doesn't like to paddle,
so well-drained soil, but in the summer it means loads of water.
Difficult conditions to recreate What a wonderful job they have made
of this. It is a special place where you display your most
important possessions. In pride of place is this gorgeous PNA. --
peony. This is one of the most inspiring stands I have ever seen.
The Great Pavilion, it is all about reputation and achieving floral
perfection. That is something that Christine Skelmersdale off
Broadleigh Gardens knows all about. She has been exhibiting here for 39
years and she has had a lot to do with the development of this world
class floral marquee. But this year is to be her last. We caught up
with her as she prepared for her floral finale to reflect on a life
of beautiful bulb growing. 1972 was a momentous year, a year of huge
change. We got married in 1972 and came here to live. We start of the
nursery knowing absolutely nothing about bulbs. We ploughed the field
and planted daffodils are out here, so for years we had daffodils
rotating outside the front of the house. In May that year I was taken
to my first Chelsea Flower Show. Things were very different then.
You had to wear a hat and gloves, you're photographed, and little to
do I realise that next year I would be doing my first Chelsea Flower
Show. When we started, it was very easy. You grew the plants in pots
and brought and displayed them in their containers, or you did cut
flowers. Now it is so much more difficult. You have props, you have
got to try and make it look like a garden, you have got to cover the
pots and hide them. You are judged not so much on the plans as
artistic designs. One of the big decisions was to dispose of the old
Marquee. It creaked and groaned like a sailing ship. It was full of
tent poles holding it up so you never quite knew where that would
turn up in your stand. There was limited height, but it was also hot
and dark. We had to make a decision, and so we went with this wonderful
new marquee, which we now call the pavilion. I am sitting on a small
piece of the old one now. I have some lovely cushions made from the
canvas of the old Marquee so it is still with me. Although we don't
normally have themes, we felt that this year, being my 40th Chelsea,
and my ruby wedding, we should have a coloured theme. On one side of
the stand we have gone for Ruby, so we are not going for gold, we are
going for Ruby this year. We have supporting plants, and coming
through we will have a whole host of purple alliums and a mass of
different coloured Ruby juleps thought every shape, think through
to read, and pink cut daffodils, and we have been very fortunate
this year to have a wonderful new enemy. -- anenome. I have no idea
how I will feel when I finish this, my last Chelsea. I will miss the
wonderful smell, the adrenalin rush, the panic of trying to finish and
get it all done on time. I suspect when we walk out the door at the
end I will feel sad and tearful. It is the end of an era, but there are
so many other things I want to do and this will free up my time to do
other exciting things. Are you happy with your 40th
Chelsea display? Yes, I really think I will go out on a big one. I
was worried that I have been planning it three years, but I
think we have achieved it. No anti- climax here, everyone is enthralled
with it. It is as good quality as I have ever seen you produce. It is
certainly very colourful. The tulips, finally, I didn't think
they would make it but they have come to perfection on the day.
Aren't you going to feel a bit strange not coming to Chelsea any
more? Yes, I will miss you and my fellow exhibitors. I will miss
meeting the customers. I won't miss the three am panic, wondering what
the weather will be like. I have turned the lights on, I have turned
the lights off, I have watered them - I won't miss that. What will you
be doing in the future? preparing pops for Chelsea, I will
have time to grow miniature daffodils. I want to grow my other
passion, these peonies. I want to raise a lot more of these from seed.
Your nursery in Devon is not as warm as you might think, is it?
the temperature is five degrees below what it might be here. And do
won a gold. How confident were you when you came? I never believed we
would be standing here with the gold medal, just unbelievable.
super collection of primulas and aquilegias. Have the remarks being
good? The have been positive, everyone has loved it. We have been
so pleased to get this amount of colour and the exceptional weather
we have had. My congratulations, you deserve your gold. Thank you.
There's still plenty to come from the RHS Chelsea flower show
supported by M&G investments. Coming up: Best man's speech - we
talk to the designer whose scooped the highest prize in horticulture.
Waiting for Chelsea - Stephanie Cole asks the best minds in
gardening for some inspirational advice. This is where I need to be.
The pond, a great problem area in my garden, and I will be asking
lender to guide me. -- asking Linda. And Jubilee
jubilation - we talk to the nursery that's scooped the Diamond Jubillee
Award in the Great Pavilion. For those looking for inspiration
in their modest patch, there's the small garden category. They may be
Main Avenue show gardens in miniature, but they're big on
inspiration and ideas. This year there are 17 of them competing for
medals and they're split into two categories - fresh and artisan.
Earlier, Toby Buckland went to take a look at who had caught the judges
eye and why. If you go to the woods at the back
of the Showground today, you are in for a very pleasant surprise. That
is because this is the home of the artisan gardens, a relatively new
category here, and one that is based on sustainability and natural
materials. There are eight gardens this year, and two got gold. One of
the winners is the Bronte Yorkshire garden and I can see why. The hard
landscaping is good and the naturalistic planting is lovely and
soft but it is not those things that give this garden the X Factor.
It is the fact it captures the spirit of the Yorkshire moors.
Sometimes soft, sometimes dangerous. The Gothic wall paints a picture of
the gloom in the Bronte books and the window gives the whole patch
and uncomfortable feel. The second was Ishihara's garden, who were
also won Best In Category. The best at his own garden. Thanks very
TRANSLATION: Last year the tsunami and the earthquake destroyed
everything and he was very pleased to get the chance to recreate this
beautiful scenery. Andrew, you were the chairman of the assessors who
judged this garden. Why do think it is the best in the category? At the
reason it stands head and shoulders above the other gardens is that it
has this amazing flow around the garden. Your eyes are drawn to the
different elements of it and the devil is in the detail. We have
these incredible details, like the Stones and the Morse so you get the
feeling this garden has always -- stones and moss. The remaining nine
gardens were competing in a brand new category this year called Fresh,
and it's a little controversial as the RHS ripped up the rule book and
told the designers anything goes. The controversy doesn't end there,
because only one won gold and Best In Category, and it went to Tony
Smith with his "Green With" garden. What makes this garden better than
the others? It is all about envy and desire. It really draws you win,
it is an amazing garden that brings you win it as an individual, even
if there are 100 people standing round the I'd -- outside. Did the
other gardens not deliver for the judges? We have a lot of new
exhibitors so it is only ever going to get better.
Earlier we chatted to the wonderful Stephanie Cole about her passion
for gardening. She's a huge fan of Chelsea and wanted to use her trip
to get some advice for solving some dilemmas in her own garden. We
followed her round as she took picked the horticultural brains of
the floral folk here, who really do know what they're talking about.
That is what I love about Chelsea, this wonderful smile and I could
see exactly why the glory of all those roses. Look, aren't they
beautiful. The deep red and the White, beautiful. Now, that is just
what I am looking for. They look as if they have just arrived together
by pure chance. This is a rather difficult place in my garden. Now,
this is where I need to be. The pond, a difficult area in my garden,
and I will be asking Linda to guide me. So unlike the zebra grass, nice
and bright, and to complement that, this has an arrangement that gives
you the lovely strong shape. And the miniature Equus C -- Equisetum.
This is my kind of garden, lovely and organic. I can actually sit
down. Seriously, this is a wonderful garden. I grew this in my
garden for a few years and it disappeared, I don't know why. It
is very breathtaking, moving actually. I just think this is the
most beautiful garden, and it's so deserves its prize. It really does.
I love the man who created it and I'm going to meet him. Joe,
congratulations. Thanks. It is fabulous. When have you got time to
do my garden? Now - I am pretty pushed for time. I would love to do.
I have had the most wonderful day. The sun is shining, I have seen
some glorious gardens, it has been Celebrities flock here every year
like bees to nectar. Who'd have thought gardening could create such
glamour? It all adds to the magic of Chelsea, because this is the
show that has the power to create household names, and today a new
one has been added. A star is born. Sarah, welcome. With your Daily
Telegraph Garden. Tell me about the history of this. What have you done
before in terms of show gardens and what have you won in terms of
medals? My first show garden was at Hampton Court Palace and I wonder a
gold, which I was completely shocked and amazed at. When was
that? In 2006. Gosh! I came to Chelsea in 2007-08 with smaller
gardens and won silver. So now this is a big garden on Main Avenue and
a big prize. Did you expect it? I've had a really amazing team
behind me, Crocus. And also the Telegraph let you design what you
wanted to. Designers always say this. If they give you a brief it
is con Tricketted but if they let you have your head it's wonderful.
So from your point of view freedom was wonderful? Absolutely. They
could sense I was toning myself down for Chelsea and they said, "Go
with it." You need that support, that encouragement. Do you like it?
I do. I like, I feel like I'm starting to get to know it. It
sounds ridiculous when you visualise nit your head, but the
light is changing, we've had sun, and the plants are opening. And by
the end of the week it's a garden. Many congratulations. Thank you.
You can find out more about the thinking behind Sarah's design over
on the Red Button, but don't press it yet. Wait until after the show.
Now, Medals Day can be joyous or heartbreaking for designers. It
takes months, even years of work to get here, never mind the added
pressure of winning a medal, so you'd be forgiven for taking a
break. Arne Maynard's break has lasted 12 years. Carol went to find
out what it was like for him to be back. You've won two golds.
Absolutely brilliant. Thank you very much. Very well deserved. I
have to say straight away that what I love about the garden is the
planting. It is so accomplished and it is so clever. Yet it looks
completely natural. What I wanted to do with the planting, I wanted
it to feel like a garden that everyone could take away a little
bit from it. I wanted a garden that was created by plants and planted
material, so we had the copper beech trees which formed the axis
in the garden. They have become a beautiful backdrop with all the
planting, with the roses and the perennials and the delphiniums. And
we've got the opium poppies and cornflowers to. Me that's a real
garden, a garden where things do migrate around. Exactly, because
some of it looks almost accidental. That's the intention. But very
difficult to get. The colouring is so subtle but it works so
brilliantly. I love all the pinks and whites. And big accents of dark
colours. The roses really provide that accent. What I'm particularly
pleased about is the way I've trained them, on these hazel domes.
That's what die in my garden and clients' gardens. We've had used a
number of varieties. That sharp pink compliments the dusky look.
is very sculptural and signature Arne Maynard, are we going to see
another one next year? Maybe not next year. Between now and ten
years. I hope so. There are so many facets in Arne
Maynard's garden, you can lose yourself. Good for him.
Over in the Great Pavilion, the gold medal-winning nurseries are
competing to win their equivalent of Best in Show. And this year the
presentation has become all the more regal. Rachel went to
investigate. Here in the Great Pavilion from now on exhibits are
not only competing for gold but to be crowned with the equivalent of
Best in Show. This is the Diamond Jubilee Award and it's renamed to
coincide with the Jubilee. The winner is literally royally
anointed, as the prist idgeous prize is presented by the Queen
herself. But how do you you begin to choose who should win? The
person with all the answers RHS judge Jekka McVicar. What's it that
the judges are looking for? This beautiful display by HW Hyde has
got everything right. It is the most wonderful specimens, and a
huge variety. Attention to detail with the labels and all the edging.
And that is what makes it just superb. I must say, Richard, it
does look absolutely immaculate to me. What does this mean to you as a
nursery? We have a vision of what it should look like. It worked out
exactly how it worked in our heads, so for nursery, for us, the
exhibitor, this is the pinnacle. Have you won Best in Show before,
or anything similar at Chelsea? at Chelsea. It is really exciting.
I know your sister picked up the award from the Queen herself. Got
that feel like? Amazing, she said. Many congratulations. It's the most
beautiful display. I can't fault it. Clearly the judges couldn't either.
Congratulations. Thank you very much.
A bit of a thrill there meeting the Queen. If she was here right now I
think Her Majesty could approve of this corgi? You do approve?
haven't made up my mind. Anne Brook made it to meet the Queen. It is
made of chrysanthemums with black ris for its eyes. Have you seen
what the nose is made of? Pussy willow. I expect it to roll over at
any moment. And tiblg its tummy. It has -- and tickle its tummy. It has
a bowl of blueberries and a bone. Peter Dowell's L'Occitane garden
and Andy Sturgeon's garden for M&G Investments. This weather is
exactly what's needed to bring out all those scents and perfumes. It
is a lot cheaper than a Mediterranean holiday. And you have
no for passport control. Andy has won a few at Chelsea, it is still a
pressure. I think there's a certain amount of relief, but also surely
this exhilaration, he looked happy to me today, and no wonder. To
maintain that kind of standard year after year and always do something
new. I love that bronzey sculpture, thatlb Serpentine slithering
through the water. I love the stone. To be brave and push the boat out
financially, to have these big pieces. Smooth stone is wonderful
in a garden, it gives peace and certainty. It is lovely. When you
want to be cool, it is lovely to have a lie down. The RHS may be
judge and jury medal-wise but it is a subjective matter and you may
have your own opinion of who was robbed and who deserved gold. You
can vote for your favourite show garden in the RHS People's Choice
Award. We'll be looking at all the show gardens across the week to.
Take part, go to our website - bbc.co.uk/chelsea.
Follow the link to the RHS peel's award. We'll announce the result on
Saturday on BBC Two at 7.15 pm. Every year the RHS judges choose
one medal-winning show garden to award the Best in Show award. This
is the highest prize and receiving it can take careers to the next
level. Earlier the President of the RHS, Elizabeth Banks, presented the
trophy to this year's winner. have got the greatest pleasure to
give you, to the Brewin Dolphin garden, the Best in Show award.
Thank you very much. It is just wonderful and so many
congratulations to you and actually all the team.
CHEERING AND APPLAUSE Hooray! This is fabulous. Absolutely fabulous.
It is a little light the Cup Final. This is more useful. You can put
port in there. Two years running Best in Show. Is that a record?
don't know many others two years Best in Show. I really done. It is
quite something. I hate that question, how you do feel? But I
have to ask you. It's genuinely overwhelming. I was going to put a
bet on someone else yesterday. us through what you were trying to
do here. Brewin Dolphin, 250 th year of one of the founding members
of the London Stock Exchange. gave me an open brief but we
decided on something that was traditional with a contemporary
twist, so we can reference history but bring it up to the present day.
This wellhead became our focal point. It is used in a contemporary
context. You have used topiary. Each year there'll be a Zeitgeist,
a mood of the moment, and it will pop up in several gardens. We get
desperate thinking what hasn't been done for several years. Where did
they come from? A nursery in Belgium. They've got so many
presence. The garden is reflecting that 250 years. 250 year agos ago
topiary was being ripped out by people like "Capability" Brown.
can celebrate it now with a nice glass of port. Cleve West, best
garden in show. APPLAUSE It's been a momentous day here in
the Royal Hospital ground. We've had a fair share of laughter and
tears. The sun has come out. Nothing can bring out a smile quite
Apology for the loss of subtitles for 53 seconds
SONG: You Can Get It If You Really One of the great things the sun has
done is bring out all the flowers that have been held back so far.
And what's more in the show gardens the judges haven't penalised people
for the fact that that knowledge this season, for the fact that
things were backward. It is a really good sign. It's a
recognition of the fact that gardening is all about cycle and
change. It is not saying alright we'll let you off this year,
because they are. It is being realistic that the sun is bringing
them all out. Opening the flowers and making them brighter. That's
all for tonight's Chelsea. Nicki Chapman and Toby Buckland will be
back tomorrow at 12.30pm on BBC One. I'll be joined by Chris Beardshaw
tomorrow night on BBC One and BBC Two for a bumper 90 minutes of
Chelsea coverage. If you simply can't wait, you can press the red
button straight after the show to find out more about Sarah Price's
design inspiration. And join Tom Hart Dyke, who's looking at the
Alan Titchmarsh and Carol Klein talk to the gold medal-winning designers and exhibitors in the Great Pavilion and reveal who has won the Chelsea 2012 prestigious 'best in show' award. Plus, Rachel de Thame finds out what it takes to win the equally coveted President's Award in the Great Pavilion.