RHS Chelsea Flower Show - 23 – 27 May 2023
We have made our presence felt at this year’s RHS Chelsea Flower Show, held 23 – 27 May 2023 at The Royal Hospital Grounds, Chelsea, as our natural stone is at the heart of the Hamptons Mediterranean Garden, in association with Garden Club London, designed by Filippo Dester, in a setting that is full of textures and scent.
Three separate areas comprise this sanctuary garden, a contemporary outdoor living space that showcases different types of planting.
‘The idea behind this garden is that it is very much an extension of the home, an outside room effectively, that makes you feel very welcome. You want to live in it and not just look at it. The whole experience is of the garden as a relaxing place and a space for wellbeing,’ says Filippo.
The main focus is on the entertaining area with its ornamental planting, kitchen unit and dining table. ‘Creating an area for conviviality is definitely a key element of the design concept as a dining area gets people together,’ Filippo continues. His Italian heritage has influenced the Mediterranean theme. ‘My culture also informs what I’m used to in terms of planting,’ he says. The design and planting could belong to a larger garden in Tuscany or a garden in the south of England where the climate is similar to a Mediterranean one.
The dining area showcases Artisans’ of Devizes Wychwood Limestone in a Tumbled Finish.
Wychwood Limestone was chosen because of its pale hues that go with the other materials in the garden and because it fits the overall ambience. ‘Wychwood has such a lovely texture and we loved the etching on it,’ says Filippo. ‘It’s soft, subtle and elegant, but at the same time it is full of character. We wanted to choose a stone that would work as an addition to the garden but that also create details that stand out and showcase the stone as a feature on its own.’ Also in this area, Filippo has incorporated our Reform Reformed Stone Tumbled Bianco, which is a blend of recycled materials. ‘Again, it’s a very lovely texture, slightly rustic but at the same time with a very contemporary look. It also has a recycling and sustainability theme to it,’ he says.
Wychwood provides a link throughout the garden. A cosy, shaded area with lush planting has a showstopping water feature clad in Wychwood as its focal point. Raised beds and steps also incorporate Wychwood. ‘It is a recurring theme throughout the garden.’ Filippo has tried to use natural, traditional materials that are sustainable but in a contemporary way. ‘It is not a traditional garden at all, but it very much references traditional materials and themes throughout,’ he says. The Artisans of Devizes stone blends beautifully with the other materials such as brick tile blocks and rendered walls, resulting in a toning palette of off white, creams and light terracotta colours.
The final area of the garden feels like a private space with plants more suitable to arid conditions. ‘All the plants are sourced for climate change and are very drought tolerant and hardy but particularly so in this area,’ says Filippo. ‘They are suitable for a southern UK climate but it is also a conscious approach to planting that saves water. We see it as a way forward to make gardens more sustainable and with less waste of water.’
See more images of the garden here.
Chelsea Flower Show takes place 23 – 27 May 2023 at The Royal Hospital Grounds, Chelsea
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