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Beauty With Bounty At RHS Chelsea

M&G Garden

The 2011 M&G Garden at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show is a modern take on a traditional kitchen garden, designed by renowned landscape architect Bunny Guinness. The title sponsor’s garden is one that you can both live from and live with – a modern take on a traditional kitchen garden – a beautiful, relaxing space and also a working plot producing bountiful fruit, herbs, vegetables and flowers.

M&G Garden

This year, elements of the garden will be donated after the show – the fruit and veg to The Royal Hospital Chelsea, and raised beds and a selection of flowers to the RHS Campaign for School Gardening, who will be re-homing the plants in a new Community Garden at Christ Church CofE Primary School in South London.

The M&G Garden features raised beds built from willow and topped with cedar coping, which are planted with vegetables and flowers. Cabbages and beans mingle with clematis and roses, whilst lavender and other herbs provide fragrance. Large terracotta pots containing fruit trees are placed throughout the garden.

Traditional in spirit, the garden also embraces innovative features including an elegant glass platform. This ‘floating’ deck offers a different viewing dimension on to the garden’s near symmetrical paths and beds. It also provides a light, sheltered place for people and plants below.

The design is framed by a series of pleached trees, standing nearly three metres tall, which are trained against wires and ironwork that echo the balustrade design. This is a garden which demonstrates how a traditional approach can stand the test of time, particularly when updated for a modern world.

© Sharon Brown 29th May 2011

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