• Inspiration from Chelsea

    29 Jun, 2017 15:10

    We were interested to see the emergence of more grey aggregates, paving and garden products, reflecting the current trend for this exterior colour.

    The popularity of this versatile shade has driven colour schemes away from the traditional Cotswold and Rustic colour tones normally associated with Chelsea, providing greater diversity and variance of decorative aggregates than seen in previous years within both show gardens trade stands.

    We feel the ease in which this colour can be integrated within landscaping schemes is part of its appeal as can be matched with any other colour and also works well as part of a contemporary, urban landscaping design that predominantly features neutral grey colour tones.

    At Chelsea this year we noticed that this proliferation of grey shades interestingly was offset by an abundance of bright and colourful planting schemes. The vibrancy of the flowers was a theme seen within many of the gardens; examples include the M&G Garden designed by James Basson who used yellow extensively in his award-winning garden based on the Maltese landscape and Garden Beneath a Mexican Sky, which was inspired by Mexican Modernist architect Luis Barragan and features a variety of red, orange and yellow flowers.

    This use of vivid planting designs draws from the rich cultural aspects of the countries and created more unique and bold patterns than seen previously. We noticed that this theme was repeated within many of the gardens this year.

    This contrast of the grey paving or aggregate, with the vibrant coloured flowers draws inspiration from the increasing popularity of developing urban spaces. These landscape schemes are designed to complement city architecture whilst maximising usable green space.

    The RHS are currently running a campaign titled Greening Grey Britain and had a show garden titled The RHS Greening Grey Britain at Chelsea this year to encourage the transformation of cold grey areas into beautiful living spaces. Another garden that centred around this idea was City Living designed by Kate Gould which also ties heavily into this theme giving us further evidence that grey is currently a very on-trend colour.

    One grey aggregate we noticed there was an abundance of at this year’s Chelsea was the contemporary Charcoal Slate. Whilst the Plum and Blue Slate were still popular choices, the number of gardens and trade stands using the Charcoal Grey had increased significantly.

    We also saw many stands using Silver Grey Pebbles, Cobbles or Chippings a well as Dove Grey Pebbles and Cobbles. These attractive stones have rarely been used in previous years and were a refreshing change from the more commonly used Cotswold, Golden Gravel or Scottish Pebbles and Cobbles.

    Black Basalt Chippings are also a product we saw featured more prominently in this year’s show. This popular versatile product is black when wet and a dark charcoal grey colour when dry so perfectly complemented the gardens and stands with the modern, city influences.

    We thoroughly enjoyed our visit to this year’s Chelsea Flower Show and were very interested to note the emergence of this new colour scheme that reflects the increasing popularity of our grey products.