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Visiting Hampton Court Flower Show


By peter


Yesterday’s visit to the RHS Hampton Court Flower Show was great fun. After seeing some of the crowds and queues at Chelsea Flower Show on TV I was prepared for a bit of a jostling around the gardens and long waits for a decent view – neither of these happened! We got there about half an hour before the gates opened to wait in a short queue and I really appreciated having made the effort, although it didn’t get as bad as I expected the show gardens soon got busier and it was nice to have looked around in the initial peace. Particularly for the more tranquil gardens like the “Try this at home” garden.

It’s difficult to decide on favourites as each garden is different, but I was surprised again (after Bluespruce’s colourful conifers) at how much I liked the conifer garden which was light and interesting with many different shapes; a far cry from my impression of conifers as tall dark fences!

The small gardens were really impressive and I think my favourite was “The Willow Pattern Plot” for its curves.

The Rainbow Trust had a very bright and apt design in their “Smile Garden”.
They all made me realize how much could be done in such a small space.

Hampton Court has a real festival feel to it, complete with Glastonbury style mud :)

There were two band stands with live music and plenty of people sat enjoying a drink, opening their umbrellas when the odd shower arrived. A couple of the gardens were giving away small tipples and people were stopping to enjoy a drop of sherry or red wine – very decadent at 10 in the morning and adding to the festival atmosphere.

We even found a fashion show with clothes made of plants!

I really enjoyed my visit to Hampton Court and would love to go again next year. Yes, the food is expensive and there are lots of retailers, but there’s more to it than just the show gardens. It has a great atmosphere and there’s plenty to see as you walk round, including a marquee with plant collections. We sat outside for a while at the end of the day and most people leaving were weighed down with new plants they’d bought at the show, obviously inspired by the fantastic gardens inside.

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Managed to catch last night's coverage on BBC 2. I wish I'd seen the previous programme! Thanks for the photos. I live too far away to go to the London shows. I hope to go to the AG show at the end of August for the first time.

7 Jul, 2007


Many thanx for the beautiful pics. I had been given tickets for 2days to th show at Christmas, but in the end could not get (was not too heartbroken, though, coz i have the TV, Internet, and this site to check it all out). I think all your photos are amazing, what a great camera you must have.

9 Jul, 2007


Thanks :) photographing great gardens and beautiful flowers helps! I bought a Nikon D40 (digital SLR) earlier this year and my photos suddenly improved, although that could be because I read the instructions for this one which I never did with my old compact.

10 Jul, 2007


The flower rainbow is fantastic! The conifer trees are quite good as well, guess if they used tweezers for shaping. There was a programme on TV a while ago, a gardener shaped trees as ducks, deer, Mickey Mouse, etc. "One wrong move, - he said, - and you can cut his finger off". Very amusing.

10 Jul, 2007

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