Hampton Court Show June 2010

A big happy well done to the excellent Chelsea show gardeners who achieved medals this year and a hearty congratulations to my favourite who received a coveted gold!

Hampton Court Show is coming up fast, opening to the public on 8th July 2010 (6th Julyfor RHS members).  There is always a wealth of innovative ideas at Hampton and exhibits are traditionally extensive and luxurious.  This year my eye has been caught by a therapeutic garden, designed by Fi Boyle Garden Design and built by Cirencester Civil Engineering Ltd.

This garden has been designed to be used by ex-Service personnel undergoing rehabilitation for PTSD and other psychological wounds of Combat Stress.  The design is gentle and flowing, with honey-coloured paths complementing the dry stone walling.  It embraces the specific needs of its users: the benches are safe, with clear lines of sight and no space for hidden threats such as bombs or ambushes; there are areas for contemplation with reflective water; and the planting is robust yet soothing (no red or orange), with a mix of evergreens and perennials for year-round interest.

The centrepiece is a young oak tree purchased by veterans to replace the one felled at Combat Stress’ headquarters, where the garden will be installed after the show.  A very thoughtful piece.  This year, I won’t make it to Hampton as Studioni are fully booked with garden studio installations and my help is required in the office.  A good thing – I’m not complaining!  Best of luck to all exhibitors, hope the sun shines!

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