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Hooray for Bloomsday!

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The Lady 27/06/2012

Heather Appleton’s Russian Museum Garden

This year’s Hampton Court Palace Flower Show promises to be a truly magnificent event

Written by Sarah Langton-Lockton

Hampton Court Palace Flower Show is one of the glories of the English summer. It’s the biggest flower show in the world, in a magnificent setting – 34 acres of park, with the spectacular Long Water, criss-crossed by pontoons, dividing the site smartly down the middle. I love the journey by train, with the first glimpses of the palace’s Tudor brickwork across the river as one emerges from the station, and then the picturesque ferry ride or the stroll over the bridge and along the river bank, skirting the palace and its immaculately restored gardens.

Last year, I admired the way vegetables were creeping into the show gardens, and mixing unselfconsciously with the ornamentals. I enjoyed spotting the most popular plant – ‘Kalibos’, a handsome pointed cabbage with deep purple/red leaves, which hails from Eastern Europe. And I was enchanted by the show garden that won Best In Show, the enigmatically named ‘I am, because of who we are’.

This garden, by designers Caroline Comber and Petra Horackova, expressed the need for communities and nations to build beneficial partnerships. It consisted of interlocking circles of planting, each with a single plant species; wherever the circles came together, the species also combined, illustrating the designers’ messages of harmony and participation…

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