For 5 days at the end of May the grounds of the Royal Hospital of Chelsea are taken over by the brightest stars of horticulture and floristry. Once the largest flower show in Britain (it has now been overtaken by RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show) it is still the most prestigious, with keen competition to exhibit, a 6 week build time and huge investment attracting industry leaders at the top of their game. To give an idea of scale, The Great Pavilion, which showcases the finest specialist growers from the U.K. and beyond, is approximately 11,775 square metres in size, large enough to park 500 London buses!
There is a unique buzz around the Chelsea Flower Show which extends beyond the industry and this year was no exception. The Duchess of Cambridge’s garden added a further royal seal of approval to show (the Queen is an annual visitor and enjoys a private viewing of the gardens and exhibits on press day) and visitor numbers soared as the public waited patiently to catch a glimpse of the Duchess’ work. The BBC estimated that viewing figures hit 3 million, with Monty Don, Carol Klein and Simon Lycett providing viewers at home with a unique insight into the show.
We were exceptionally privileged to be invited to attend and were blown away by the response ixia Flowers received from the public, the RHS and our colleagues at the show – both first time and veteran exhibitors with over 20 Chelseas under their belts. For such a special occasion we opted for a slightly different design to showcase our boxed flowers including two towers of blooms framing the entrance to our stand, two stunning urns filled with the finest seasonal flowers and 3 pedestals of our luxury triple box designs in our signature colours. In order to combat the environmental impact of floral foam this year all Chelsea florists had been challenged to create work without using this medium and it was inspiring to see the different takes on the concept. As a company we followed suit and all the work on our stand was proudly #foamfree too.
Chelsea Flower Show was a huge learning experience for us and we were delighted to be asked to attend, despite the long hours, crowds and sore feet – there really is nothing quite like being a Chelsea exhibitor. As always we would like to thank Jonathan Moseley for his wonderful support of our endeavours, the incredibly hardworking and talented team which make this show a reality year after year, the RHS, the event support team and all our new friends and customers. There’s barely time for a breather before RHS Chatsworth begins, watch this space for what the next show has in store for Ixia Flowers! As ever you can follow us at @ixiaflowersuk on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.