chelsea flower show

Highlights Of This Year’s RHS Chelsea Flower Show

Highlights Of This Year’s RHS Chelsea Flower Show - Abstract House

What Is The Chelsea Flower Show?

Aside from being the destination to discover the world’s most beautiful plants and botanicals, the Chelsea Flower Show is an event created by the Royal Horticultural Society that celebrates everything from landscape gardeners at the top of their tiers, gardens cultivated from a passion for architectural design, to think tanks on the future of the horticultural world and the role sustainability plays for the environment. It is a cultural hotspot to discover bold new waves in the world of botanicals.

As passionate plant lovers, we are avid fans of this special event in the horticultural calendar and look forward to attending the event.

This week an array of floral displays and garden designs descended upon London. It has long been considered the greatest flower show in the world and this year has been no exception. Sharing Abstract House’s values, this year has a special focus upon sustainability, mental health and the climate crisis and the show has once again demonstrated its artistic and social relevance. 

What’s Not To Be Missed?

This year, the Chelsea Flower Show is exhibiting 39 show gardens plus four installations to celebrate Queen Elizabeth’s Platinum Jubilee. To help you use your time most efficiently at the bustling event, here is what you absolutely must not miss! 

Simon Lycett’s tribute to Her Majesty Queen

Simon lycett chelsea flower show queen elizabeth tribute plant design exhibit

Photo Credit: Daniel Leal/ Getty Images

Renowned for creating arrangements for the royal family, Simon Lycett has created a unique tribute in honour of the Queen’s Jubilee. The dominant plant within the display is Lily of the Valley, said to be Her Majesty’s favourite flower. Consisting of 70 terracotta pots, Lycett commemorates Queen Elizabeth’s years upon the throne. The display is finished with a purple silhouette, highlighting the monarch’s profile using the official colour of the Platinum Jubilee.  

With the country gearing up for the festivities of next week’s four-day bank holiday, visiting this exhibition is the perfect way to kick off celebrations. 

A Textile Garden for Fashion

Lottie delamain chelsea flower show highlight exhibit

Photo Credit: RHS Images

In line with the Chelsea Flower Show’s emerging theme of sustainability and consciousness, garden designer Lottie Delamain’s exhibit is not to be missed. The aim of her garden is to encourage a closer relationship with fashion by consisting exclusively of plants that may be used to make or dye clothing. 


This is what Lottie Delemain had to say about her entry in this year’s show:
‘A Textile Garden for Fashion Revolution provides a unique opportunity to showcase creative possibilities and innovative thinking around how we can use the resources that are literally on our doorsteps to create more sustainable solutions

Above the plants, there are fabrics hanging from washing lines which reflect Dalemain’s vision of what can be created using her philosophy. Reflective pools representing dye baths are dispersed amongst the flowers, with fabrics soaking in natural dyes. Dalemain’s exhibition demonstrates how, instead of using toxic chemicals that damage the environment, we can work with nature in order to create greener, more sustainable fashion.

The Place2Be Securing Tomorrow

Jamie Butterworth sanctuary garden chelsea flower show exhibit

Photo Credit: RHS Images 

Having secured a gold medal, Jamie Butterworth’s sanctuary garden is another that is not to be missed. Aimed at children looking for a safe space, the intention of this particular garden is to encourage conversations around mental health. There is a big focus on trees as a structural component, with the dominant flowers being buttercups and irises.  

Once the Chelsea Flower Show has ended, the garden will be relocated to Viking Primary school in West London. Butterworth spent time with the children of Viking Primary before designing the garden to gauge a sense of what they would like. The hope is that the garden will become a place where children can go when they feel a need to talk to someone, be it a teacher, therapist or friend.

A Garden Sanctuary by Hamptons’

Hamptons estate agents garden sanctuary chelsea flower show

Photo Credit: RHS Images

Designed by Tony Woods, A Garden Sanctuary is a true inspiration for domestic gardens across the country. After two years of lockdowns and with working from home a definitive norm, this garden shows how you can create a space that takes you far away from your home, despite being on the doorstep! 

The centrepiece of the garden is a cabin created by Koto Design that is carbon neutral and offers a fully immersive experience amongst the plants. The design influence comes from the ancient Japanese philosophy Wabi Sabi, focused on accepting the transient nature of life and the beauty in imperfection. The garden itself is a sentient experience with the inclusion of phlox offering clouds of sweetness, whilst pine and birch trees give height to the garden and encourage birds to its ecosystem.  

The Plantman’s Ice Garden

 Ice sculpture chelsea flower show 2022

Photo Credit: RHS Images

Perhaps one of the boldest gardens the Chelsea Flower Show has ever seen, the Ice Garden sends a clear message about the ongoing climate crisis. Inspired by the fact that since 1994, 28 trillion tonnes of ice have disappeared from the planet’s surface, John Warland’s 15 tonne ice cube will slowly melt as the flower show progresses. Lying at the centre of the block is a Doomsday Clock that will be revealed once all the ice has melted away.  

Surrounding the sinister message are Siberian woodland plants which serve as a reminder of what is at risk but also what could still be saved. 

A Rewilding Britain Landscape

Lulu urquhart and adam hunt best in show rewilding garden chelsea flower show
Photo Credit: RHS Images

Winning the much-coveted Best in Show prize, this rewilding garden by Lulu Urquhart and Adam Hunt has captured the hearts of its visitors. Its inspiration comes from an unlikely source - the beaver. The garden shows a landscape in South West England after the reintroduction of the species. This is the first garden to feature in the history of the Chelsea Flower Show that showcases the results of working with nature’s eco-engineers. 

Water is at the heart of this garden as a brook sprawls amongst the plants and walls. Below lies a pool that has been dammed by beavers as well as a beaver’s lodge that has been built around a willow tree.

 BBC Studios Our Green Planet and RHS Bee Garden

Bbc studios our green planet rhs bee garden bbc earth joe swift chelsea flower show exhibit

Photo Credit: RHS Images

Continuing the theme of preserving natural ecosystems is BBC Studios Our Green Planet and RHS Bee Garden. Through the partnership of RHS and BBC Earth, Joe Swift has successfully designed a beautiful tribute to bees. 

The garden itself is built around the silhouette of a bee’s wing which acts as a centrepiece as well as a path through the exhibit. There has long been a threat that the creatures could vanish into extinction within the UK. Swift hopes that his garden will show how we can instigate change through small changes such as opting for pollen-rich plants.  So, if you’re a bee lover, this is definitely not one to miss!

The Boodles Travel Garden

Boodles travel garden thomas hoblyn anthony wainwright travels chelsea flower show

Photo Credit: RHS Images

The Boodles Travel Garden brings a sense of the exotic to the show. Designed by Thomas Hoblyn, the concept for the garden came from the travels of Anthony Wainwright. Back in 1962, the grandfather of the current chairman of Boodles travelled around the world in 18 days. This exhibition gives a sense of what this may have felt like by bringing the global to the garden.  

Amongst the plants are potted Cyathea cooperii, native to India with striking bark pattern, Cornus controversa from East Asia, and Acer davidii from China. This garden offers a moment of calm and sanctuary amongst the busy energy of the show.

Out of the Shadows

 Kate gould best sanctuary garden royal horticultural society chelsea flower show

Photo Credit: RHS Images

Last, but by no means least, Out of the Shadows. Kate Gould has managed to secure Best Sanctuary Garden, Best Construction Award and a gold medal for her creation of this magnificent space. The feeling of the garden is akin to a spa with the intention of offering a safe haven for people to relax and unwind. Gould has chosen to stick with a largely green palette (something that is also gaining popularity within interiors) giving it a tropical feel. 

When you visit the garden, you will see a yoga and meditation space nestled amongst the tropical planting which offer a sense of privacy. There is also a swim spa, as well as ample seating throughout the exhibition that offer moments of relaxation.

 Jamie lorriman chelsea flower show photography

 Photo Credit: Jamie Lorriman

This year’s Chelsea Flower Show truly enforces the trends that we all would like to focus upon in our own lives. With nature as the predominant theme, the show is filled with inspiration for how you could develop your own outdoor spaces to do your bit as we battle climate change.


Many of the designers have also demonstrated how you do not necessarily need a large space to create an area that can take you away from the stresses of everyday life. Installing your own yoga area, for instance, could take you one step closer to having your own ‘sanctuary garden’.

A big takeaway from this year’s show is that we should all be bringing ourselves closer to nature. Each exhibition has demonstrated innumerable ways in which you can be creative with your outdoor space in order to make the most out of it for sustainability efforts and for your own wellbeing.

Love botanicals? Discover our exclusive Floral Art Collection inspired by the show.

Surround yourself with the beauty of nature to inspire a joy for the outdoors. 

We hope you enjoyed our round-up of the highlights of this year’s special showcase! Let us know in the comments or tag us @myabstracthouse on Facebook or Instagram to tell us which was your favourite exhibit.

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