Flowers for Chelsea

Last Updated: 24 Sep 2014
Lily Yeang

The Chelsea Flower Show has become renowned for outdoor designs that push the envelope. We check out this year’s award-winners.

Photography RHS/Neil Hepworth © RHS


Best Show Garden + gold medallist
Designed by Luciano Giubbilei
Built by

Garden designer Luciano Giubbilei's interest in texture, form and light is conveyed in this cool, contemplative design. Formed from defined layers, the garden combines natural elements with a simple geometric layout. The lush greenery juxtaposes cool, smooth concrete surfaces, while the channels of the central water feature add animation and fluidity throughout the space. The gold medal-winning garden features Erratus, a strong wooden sculpture of layered cedar designed by world-renowned artist Ursula von Rydingsvard.

Photography RHS/Neil Hepworth © RHS


BBC/RHS People's Choice Best Show Garden + Silver Gilt
Designed by Matt Keightley
Built by Farr & Roberts

'Hope on the Horizon' was designed by Matthew Keightley to address the war in Afghanistan. It represents the complex and progressive path towards recovery experienced by wounded, injured and sick personnel, veterans and their families.

The garden takes you on a journey, passing rough granite blocks and overgrown beginnings to a smoother, perfectly structured end. As people progress through the garden, they see it evolve – what was once a damaged and distressed beginning becomes a strong and hope-filled future. Granite blocks symbolise the soldiers' physical health, while planting reflects their mental wellbeing. An avenue of hornbeams draws attention to a sculpture resembling a horizon, a reminder to the soldiers that they have a bright future ahead.

Photography RHS/Tim Sandall © RHS


This tranquil garden was inspired by the Japanese fable of Togenkyo, a place where everyone could forget their troubles but, once visited, could not be revisited. It reflects designer Kazuyuki Ishihara's notion of paradise on earth. The planting scheme was chosen to help fix an image of the garden in visitors' minds, so they could take the memory of the scenery away with them to recall and be comforted by when they were feeling troubled. The gold medal-winning garden included a Japanese water wheel and small waterfall, and deep red Japanese maples. Along with the strikingly lush greenery, furry green moss balls create a sensory dreamscape that makes the garden seem out of this world.


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