This time next month, Rodney,…

Image by David Bartholomew

…we’ll be at Chelsea. Can you believe it? Chelsea Flower Show 2018 is four weeks away! The industry is buzzing with excitement and anticipation (and perhaps the tiniest bit of stress!), and so are the adoring public.

We were privileged earlier this week to attend and support the Chelsea Flower Show Preview evening, hosted by our friends Chilstone in celebration of the company’s 65th anniversary. Held at The Spa Hotel in Tunbridge Wells, all proceeds from the event, including the auction, were donated to charities Myeloma UK and Ellenor.

We were treated to a talk by expert gardener Simon Sutcliffe, from How Green Nursery in Hever, on how he and his team manage to grow 500 plants (many that are out of season) in time for Chelsea: a process that starts about 8 months before! When asked about flower trends at Chelsea this year, Simon said that English country cottage garden is always a recurring theme as “that’s what the punters’ want.” A really interesting insight into what goes on behind the scenes of Britain’s most prestigious flower show.

Following a fantastic musical performance by violinist Andrew Bernardi and pianist Maria Marchant, we heard from Chelsea gold medal-winning designer John Everiss about his experiences at Chelsea and the inspiration behind his gardens and the sculptures within them. This year, John has designed a garden for Myeloma UK, with the pièce de résistance being a 12 foot tall blue Perspex head sculpture! I’m pretty certain that no one will be able to miss that and we cannot wait to see it.

And after you have spent some time taking in the Myeloma UK garden, turn around and look for Chilstone as we have it under good authority that their stand (one of three that Sandstone is designing and building) is practically opposite!

So, a huge thanks and well done to Chilstone and everyone else involved in putting together such a wonderful evening. Now everyone back to work!