Highlights of the Great Pavilion- RHS Chelsea Flower Show
A new zantedeschia named ‘Captain Chelsea’, a sweet pea in memory of Milly Dowler, who was abducted in 2003, and a new iris called ‘Réussite’, which means success, are just some of the horticultural highlights which will be unveiled for the first time to the public inside the Great Pavilion at this year’s RHS Chelsea Flower Show, sponsored by Saga Insurance.
The Great Pavilion, which forms the centrepiece of the show, offers visitors the finest displays of horticultural excellence in the world. Within the Great Pavilion nurseries, growers and plant specialists, who are the backbone of the RHS Chelsea Flower Show, create displays perfect in every detail. Here are some of the highlights for this year:
Blackmore & Langdon has exhibited at every single RHS Chelsea Flower Show since 1913, when the show first took place in the grounds of the Royal Hospital, Chelsea. This year Blackmore & Langdon are launching a scented double begonia – the result of ten years work. The plant has been named ‘John Smith’ in recognition of the member of staff from the nursery who bred and developed it.
For the first time RHS Garden Rosemoor will be exhibiting at the show. Rosemoor, in North Devon, is one of the RHS’s three outlying gardens; the other two are Hyde Hall, in Essex, and Harlow Carr in Yorkshire.
This exhibit is intended to celebrate the local distinctiveness of the Society’s gardens, and has been inspired by three different areas of Rosemoor; the Cottage Garden, the Fruit and Vegetable Garden and Lady Anne’s Garden, which the RHS inherited when it accepted the garden in 1988.
The team aims for a display which is as sustainable as possible: all the plants are being raised at Rosemoor, the wild flower meadow turf will be “borrowed” from Lady Anne’s Arboretum and the oak fencing is being constructed using recycled oak boards, which were packing crates from a delivery at Rosemoor. Even the paths in the exhibit are being built with bricks salvaged from a wall that fell down in Lady Anne’s garden.
This year the Cayeux Iris stand will bring a touch of France to Chelsea, with 41 tall bearded irises, 24 of them Cayeux creations. The star of the exhibit is the new cultivar ‘Réussite’, which means success. The name reflects the 30 years of hybridisation work by Richard Cayeux and his father Jean Cayeux that it has taken to create a true French Tricolour – a red, white and blue iris, never before achieved with such purity of colour!
Matthewman Sweetpeas will be aiming for its eleventh consecutive RHS Gold Medal. The specialist nursery will launch sweet pea ‘Milly’, in memory of the 13 year old who was abducted and murdered on her way home from school. Twenty pence from every packet of seeds sold will be forwarded to the Trust.
Kapiteyn B.V., which is a Dutch Nursery, will make its debut at the 2006 show. The specialist nursery will launch a new zantedeschia cultivar aptly named ‘Captain Chelsea’.
Herbs will be big this year with many different cultivars featuring in a number of the floral exhibits and gardens. The Cottage Herbery will be celebrating 30 years of growing peat free plants organically. To mark the anniversary the nursery will launch Astrantia major ‘Cottage Herbery’ and three other cultivars at the show.
There will be over 100 leading UK and international exhibitors within the Great Pavilion, where visitors will see the latest plant launches and experience the sight and smell of thousands of glorious blooms at their very best.
Nineteen show gardens and 27 small gardens will also feature at the show, providing endless inspiration to take home. Added to that, displays of top-class horticultural sundries, floral arrangements, floristry and expert gardening advice, make the RHS Chelsea Flower Show the ultimate event for gardeners.