Sunday, 24 May 2009

The Chelsea Flower Show

I'm not sure if this counts as a museum visit, but it's certainly a special exhibition, so I figured it was worth writing up.
We visited the Chelsea Flower Show on Friday, and I was absolutely amazed by all that there was to see.  It is set up on the grounds of the Royal Hospital in Chelsea, and it's neat to walk around that area.  Location aside, there are essentially three major components to the show.
  1. The Main Pavilion: This is a huge tent in the centre of the show, that is probably the size of at least two (American) football fields, if not more.  Nurseries, shops and growers have displays in here, and they are phenomenal.  Many growers specialise in a certain flower (daffodils, tulips, dahlias, etc), or some stands were thematic (succulents and cacti, vegetable garden displays, etc).  The sites (and smells) in here were incredible.  In one direction, you'd get a waft from the strawberries that were growing, and then you'd turn around and confront a huge display of roses.  It was all impeccable, and incredibly beautiful.  Of course, the growers are there to make a sale, so you can order basically anything you see, and have it delivered straight to your door.
  2. The show gardens.  Outside, sponsored gardens are built.  These range from the super modern, to the Japanese inspired, to gardens with wildflowers and rivers, to a replica of urban flats with small gardens.  We definitely preferred the more wild gardens to the perfectly manicured ones, but they were a site to see.
  3. Shopping, shopping shopping!  If we actually had a garden, we could have done some serious damage here.  From wellies to garden ornaments to conservatories and greenhouses, it's all on offer.
It was a real treat to experience the legendary Chelsea Flower Show, and I suspect we'll try to get tickets again next year (when hopefully, we'll have a small garden of our very own!).  

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