CD Designs Blog

    Chelsea Awards

    The Plant of the Centenary, 'Rozanne' Geranium

    The Plant of the Centenary, the 'Rozanne' Geranium

    If you read our preview of this year’s Chelsea Flower Show, you will no doubt be eagerly wanting to know the results. Some of the main awards were the Geranium ‘Rozanne’ being named as Plant of the Centenary, and the Trailfinders Australian Garden, built by Phillip Johnson Landscapes, being awarded Best Show Garden.

    The Plant of the Centenary is a special award this year to commemorate Chelsea’s 100th year. The ‘Rozanne’ was named after its discoverer, Mrs Rozanne Waterer, who found the strange looking geranium at the bottom of her garden in the small village of Kilve in Somerset in 1989. It is thought that it is a naturally occurring hybrid, which grows taller and has larger flowers than most other geraniums.

    The Best Show Garden, Trailfinders Australian Garden

    The Best Show Garden, Trailfinders Australian Garden

    The Trailfinders Australian Garden is an attempt at “capturing a small snippet of the beauty of the Australian country”. It uses native Australian plants, from lush ferns to bright kangaroo paws and bottle trees, and includes a waterfall and billabong. You can see a short video showing the garden, along with a chat with the designer Philip Johnson, by clicking here.

    You can see all the awards, along with lots of images and videos, at the show’s website.

    Chelsea Flower Show 2013

    Chelsea Flower Show 2013

    The Homebase garden

    The Royal Horticultural Society Chelsea Flower Show 2013 starts tomorrow, which marks the 100th anniversary of the event. It lasts for 4 days, between 21st and 25th of May, and promises to be the best ever to celebrate its centenary.

    One of the main attractions this year is an installation called ‘The Rush Of Nature’, which is a collaboration with renowned British artist Marc Quinn. This is the first time in the show’s history that the RHS has worked with an artist on an exhibit. The installation is a closely guarded secret, and will be kept under wraps until tomorrows opening. It will then be auctioned off by Sotheby’s in aid of the RHS Chelsea Centenary Appeal, with the funds used to create an apprentice scheme.

    Of course the event wouldn’t be the same without the traditional show gardens, which this year include ‘Windows Through Time’, a celebration of 100 years of Chelsea garden design, and ‘After The Fire’, a garden based on regeneration after forest fires. The Great Pavillion will display a mixture of exciting new plants and flowers, alongside favourites from 1913. As always there will be lots of awards given out, including Best Garden, Best Product and the big special award for Plant of the Centenary.

    You can visit the Chelsea Flower Show 2013 website by clicking here.

    New Garden Technology

    Following on from last month’s blog about the Chelsea Flower Show, we wanted to highlight some of the new technologies that were finalists at the show. Maybe you will find some of them in your shed in the near future.

    The Harrod Slot & Lock Framework

    The Harrod Slot & Lock Framework

    As we said in the previous blog entry, the winner of the award was the Harrod Slot & Lock framework building system by Harrod Horticultural. It claims to be ‘the answer to all those build your own fruit cage, vegetable cage, climbing vegetable support and practically any garden crop protection framework woes as this exclusive new system firmly screws connectors and aluminium tubing into place’.

    The Jubilee Spiral Bench

    The Jubilee Spiral Bench

    The Jubilee Spiral Bench from Gaze Burvill is ‘suitable as standalone seating or for placing around a small tree. It is comfortable and extremely easy on the eye’. It is handmade from oak and other sustainable sources, using a unique steam-bending process.

    The Tango E5 Mower

    The Tango E5 Mower

    The Tango E5 Mower from John Deere is ‘designed to maintain your lawn automatically meaning you can enjoy the more important things in life. Designed, innovated and built by John Deere to its highest manufacturing standards, the Tango E5 autonomous mower sets a new benchmark in lawn maintenance’. It operates in any weather, is extremely quiet, and there is no grass clipping disposal required.

    DIY Concrete planters

    Simple yet beautiful home made concrete planters

    Simple yet beautiful home made concrete planters

    People are often surprised by the incredible versatility of concrete. It’s not only vital in construction and building, but also provides an excellent material for craft, design and other varied artistic applications. A great example of this, are home-made concrete planters – which are surprisingly easy to make, and a great project for a warm summer weekend.

    Instead of throwing away your ice-cream tubs or fruit juice containers, gather up some good sized plasticware to make moulds for your own concrete garden planters. Get a bag of concrete from your local DYI store, some sand and some perlite, which will help lighten the concrete once it sets. Use containers of different sizes – one inside the other, then pour the concrete mix in and allow it to set. Release the mould, send your containers to recycling and use a screwdriver to gently work in some base drainage holes.

    These planters will cost a fraction of the price of what you might buy in a garden centre, and you can have fun customising them to suit. Try chiseling in patterns, applying glazes or adding decorative features with adhesive – anything that takes your fancy. Sometimes the best artistic results with concrete are left slightly raw, unfinished and rough around the edges – so avoid the temptation to overly perfect your results. Experimentation will give you a good set of planters to work with and allow you to plant a large array of gorgeous flowers, herbs, fruits or vegetables. With a little artistic flair and creative freedom, your pattern imprinted concrete driveway will be personalised to your taste and absolutely gorgeous to behold. Just don’t be surprised if you’re asked to share your planters’ secrets of origin!

    For the a complete how to guide and to see more images, visit Rad Megans blog.

    Chelsea Flower Show 2012

    The annual Royal Horticultural Society Chelsea Flower Show was held last month between the 22nd and 26th May. The gold medal for the Best Show Garden went to ‘The Brewin Dolphin Garden’, which celebrates the 250th anniversary of Brewin Dolphin, one of Britain’s largest investment firms. You can see how the garden was built from start to finish by clicking here. Other gold medals went to ‘Green with…’ for the Best Fresh Garden, and ‘Satoyama Life’ for the Best Artisan Garden.

    The Brewin Dophin Garden

    Best Show Garden, 'The Brewin Dophin Garden'

    Another award went to the Foxglove Digitalis Illumination Pink for Plant of the Year, H. W. Hyde won the Diamond Jubilee Award for their stunning display of lilies, and Sparsholt College was voted Best Exhibit in the new RHS Environment section of the Great Pavilion.

    Plant of the Year, 'Foxglove Digitalis Illumination Pink'

    Plant of the Year, 'Foxglove Digitalis Illumination Pink'

    The winner of the Product of the Year was the Harrod Slot & Lock framework building system by Harrod Horticultural. It offers a practical solution to problems associated with building framework for protection netting and plant supports, with variable angles and 90° joints fully achievable.  Another product making the final was the Bosch cordless garden saw, which weighs less than a kilogram, offering optimum cutting efficiency with maximum mobility. These products could be being used in gardens across the country very soon.

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