2013 saw the publication of the best-selling RHS Chelsea Flower Show: a Centenary Celebration. This new paperback edition for 2014 captures the magic of the 2013 show by revealing the best gardens, people, plants and events that made the show so memorable. From the first admission of gnomes to the Royal Hospital showground to controversial judging and Prince Harry's commemorative garden, this book documents the best of the 2013 show to provide an up to date analysis of what makes Chelsea special.
For 101 years, RHS Chelsea Flower Show has been the annual event in the world of horticulture. Royal Horticultural Society insider Brent Elliott explains how the show has grown and changed, how it is has formed part of the social calendar and how the nation’s taste in garden design and planting has been reflected and shaped by Chelsea over the years.
Short pieces from some of our greatest nurserymen, nurserywomen and garden designers describe what Chelsea means to them, along with pieces from those who present the show to the public and those behind the scenes who pull it all together.
A wealth of illustration draws from the extensive RHS archive and includes photographs in colour and black and white, plans and posters, many published here for the first time. Whether you come for the nurseries or the show gardens, to buy gardening gloves or foxgloves, or whether you simply prefer to beat the crowds and read all about it, this magnificent book conjures up the full Chelsea experience.
BRENT ELLIOTT can reasonably claim to be the world expert on the history of Chelsea Flower Show. He is librarian and archivist to the Royal Horticultural Society and author of numerous articles and books. He has written introductions and captions to the RHS diaries (published by Frances Lincoln) since 1993.
New contribution from Carol Klein, designer and tv presenter
Previous contributions include:
The Lieutenant Governor Major General Peter Currie (Royal Hospital)
David Hawes, RHS show facilities assistant
Mark Fane, garden builder and nurseryman
Andy McIndoe, managing director, Hillier Nurseries
Ricky Dorlay, master plantsman, Hillier Nurseries
John Sales, RHS judge of show gardens since 1985
Andrew Lawson, photographer
Jerry Harpur, photographer
Alan Titchmarsh, gardener, writer and broadcaster
Mavis Sweetingham, RHS show manager 1986–2003
Beth Chatto, plantswoman
Rosy Hardy, partner at Hardy’s Cottage Garden Plants
Jekka McVicar, nurseryman
Stephen Bennett, RHS shows director
Bunny Guinness, landscape architect
Sarah Eberle, garden designer
Alexandra Denman, RHS Chelsea Flower Show manager 2007–
Joe Swift, garden designer
Ulf Nordfell, garden designer
Tom Stuart-Smith, garden designer
Cleve West, garden designer
'relive the glory of this year's centenary RHS Chelsea Flower Show'
“the essential souvenir of a show that has reflected and shaped tastes in garden design and planting for the past 100 years …. the chronological chapters provide a fascinating journey from the early shows to present day.”
'stunningly illustrated book ... packed with wonderful photographs of displays past and present that will have you reaching for your dibber.'
'authoritative and evocatively illustrated book... equally compelling is the charting of the cavalcade of social and cultural influences that have shaped the show. Chelsea may be 100, but she is not in her dotage, and, one hopes, will long continue to surprise and delight.’
'The text crackles with his customary wry wit, and is peppered with glorious nuggets ... the illustrations are especially rich.'
“rich in anecdotes as well as history and is superbly illustrated”.
'there is no better person to research and write the history of the Chelsea Flower Show than Brent Elliott ..."