Posted: 19/05/2017 at 22:58
I went on Friday and agree with everything above. according to web sites there were 39 plants people outside and 69 in the marquee. But there felt like fewer than that. A few years ago there were at least 60 stands outside and the same inside. Getting less of a garden show with retail and more like retail with a bit of garden. The marquee seemed to be the same one in a long line rather than the one in previous years in 3 portions side by side. Better use of the large site though, and good stuff in the sheds. The food, craft and floral decorations were all lovely. Good choice of the pic to post, loved that display.
Well done & thank you to the show gardens that were there (apart from the brightly coloured plastic 'garden') were all lovely, thank you to them. Wasn't sure about the planting of the one pictured above with a lot of wood. There looked like a lot of spare soil, but loved the design and form and the planting that was there. The plastic garden had less planting than the amount of moss on my house roof and it got a bronze Just didn't get that one at all.
jekka mcvicars garden is lovely. The little theatre spaces are a lovely idea especially in the marquee but I agree the spacing between the stands was at best snug. It's a real shame even when there are lots of people about that you are not able to stand a bit back from the stand and enjoy the very hard work from the nursery staff in the displays they've put on.
the small independent nurseries are I feel being edged out by the nurseries that import their virtually ready made displays that are put down to win awards, and those that are created on site and get little recognition. It costs a huge amount to put a stand up, let alone the logistics and the costs of the plants and staff on site. The RHS really needs to get income from the retailers and give the nurseries a break. They are not generally in it for the money, more of the love of plants. There were lots of nurseries that I've seen there over the years that weren't there this year. Maybe it's because the Chelsea flower show is just 21/2 weeks after this one that show is better for them to attend and I don't blame them for that. One at least that have got a gold for their small but exquisite outdoor display 4or 5 years ago say they might not go back as they are so disallusioned due to cost, knockbacks for displays that just don't compared to the imported and crated in displays that are plonked down for a gold medal, they weren't happy at all.
I guess any changes need to be tried and feedback read, will look forward to changes that are made for the next one. Gold parking, Umm really expensive now. Was never cheap, and the entrance fee is high enough, but it's a bit too high now RHS/3counties if you read this.