There was success once again at this week’s RHS Chelsea Flower Show as gardeners from across the area picked up a host of awards.
For Barnsdale Gardens it was a double success with Nick Hamilton and his team growing the vegetable plants for Adam Frost’s gold medal-winning Homebase show garden and picking up a silver medal of their own.
The silver was for a 12ft square floral design inspired by one of Barnsdale’s most popular areas - the ornamental kitchen garden which was originally created by Nick’s father, Geoff, for the BBC Gardeners’ World television programme.
It features organic vegetable plants mixed with flowers chosen to attract pollinating insects or deter pests. The planting is around a path of reclaimed bricks and two blue obelisks, famously made by Geoff Hamilton from spare wood and topped with a lavatory ballcock!
Nick said: “This display really represents what Barnsdale is all about and it works on so many levels. Being organic, sustainable and environmentally friendly is at the heart of everything we do, plus we’re inspiring people to ‘grow their own’ by showing just how much produce you can pack into a small area but still retain that gloriously romantic cottage garden style.”
You can see Nick interviewed on tonight’s Chelsea Flower Show coverage on BBC television.
Adam Frost, who lives in Stamford and runs his garden design business from Barnsdale Gardens, won an incredible fifth gold medal with Sowing The Seeds Of Change, a garden designed for Homebase in association with the Alzheimer’s Society.
The garden was partly inspired by his late mentor Geoff Hamilton’s ornamental kitchen garden at Barnsdale Gardens - where Adam has worked since 1991.
He helped Geoff design and build many of the 38 small gardens-within-a-garden which were used for the BBC programme.
This year’s Chelsea garden was created with a small family in mind, providing them with a space to enjoy an everyday connection with their food and with nature.
It features walkways edged with dipping ponds, a toad house, alpine strawberries and other plants grown on wildlife walls and a handcrafted oak bee hive on a lawn area under an apple tree.
Adam has married food production with a modern ornamental space.
There is an arbour area with seating, a beehive-inspired tiered water feature made from twisted steel and a central cooking area.
Where possible, he sourced products and craftsmen locally; the oak beehive was made by David Rawlings at Empingham and the decorative ironwork by Anwick Forge in Lincolnshire.
The garden attracted crowds of visitors on Monday as it was officially opened by actress and Alzheimer’s Society ambassador Lynda Bellingham. Expressing his delight at receiving the medal Adam said: “I have really enjoyed bringing this garden to life and would like to thank Homebase for its support during the design and build of the garden, as we are both committed to getting people more engaged with the great outdoors.”
Oakham-based Mosaic Garden Design and Landscaping won a Silver Gilt Flora for Meanwhile Spaces, an environmental garden created for the green community charity Groundwork.
The charity turns brownfield sites awaiting development into attractive usable spaces.
Owen Morgan, who runs the garden design business with his wife Naomi, has previously won three RHS medals, including one gold. He, Naomi and their two children live in Langham.
Naomi said: “We are thrilled with the award and it will encourage us as we begin building a garden at BBC Gardeners World Live at the NEC in Birmingham next week.”
Staff at Southfield Nurseries in Bourne Road, Morton, were overwhelmed to pick up their 25th gold medal for their cacti.
Bryan and Linda Goodey run the business with their daughter Eleanor Brown.
Eleanor said: “We are so pleased with our 25th gold.
“We were hoping but you can never quite tell, particularly with this year’s weather. Some of our cacti were a little bit later than normal but we are all just so happy.”