A gold medal at RHS Chelsea!
I am absolutely thrilled to have been awarded a gold medal by the RHS for my Boodles Travel Garden at Chelsea Flower Show 2022. What an incredible team I had working with me for many months on this project and I could not have asked for more support from our superb sponsor, Boodles.
The garden was designed to highlight an incredible journey completed In 1962, 60 years ago, by Anthony Wainwright, father to the current chairman of Boodles who travelled around the world in just 16 days. The Boodles Travel Garden was a garden to celebrate this incredible endeavour with planting drawn from all corners of the world, creating a global garden, which offered a calm sanctuary to rest and reflect on the journey.
This was not my first gold medal at Chelsea but I do think it was the most enjoyable project I have worked on there.
Planting and design
I chose planting with interesting form and habit including potted Cyathea cooperii, native to India with stunning bark pattern, Cornus controversa from East Asia, with horizontal habit and Acer davidii from China with its striped bark. Below the structural planting was a woodland stumpery-style underplanting which follows the gently flowing water path.This was marked with a trail of blue and burnt orange planting of Iris sib Caesars Brother and Primula bulleyana creating the illusion of movement and journey. The mounded beds partially obscured views to evoke scale and discovery. The winding water feature which rippled through the garden was created from taking sand moulds on West Wittering beach which were then cast in cement by Bamber Wallis. Craftsman and woodsman, Alex Walshaw created wonderful furniture in the style of a Chinese noodle bench and a door from coppiced ash and riven oak reflecting the Far Eastern section of the journey. Planting was careful grown and nurtured by Kelway Plants.
This is the second garden of three gardens I have designed at RHS Chelsea with Boodles as my sponsors.
In 2021 Tom designed The Boodles Secret Garden, inspired by the children’s book.
And in 2023 The Boodles “Best of British ” Garden, celebrating the best of British craftsmanship.
Both these gardens won Silver Gilt medals.