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Paul Stone

Rachel's Organic Gardens C93-C95

  • Date Joined: 26 Jun 2009

Hampton Court!!!

Posted by Rachel's Organic Gardens on 09 Jul 2009 at 05:32 PM

The time has come! Its Friday 25th June, Im back at Hampton Court again and Rachels ambitious display is underway. Let me take you on the Hampton Court Flower Show Garden build experience! Firstly you get there at 7:30 am latest. You will have checked the previous day that everyone is going to arrive/deliver everything that was agreed. You come into Home park through a small gate near Kingston bridge. And you enter another world. It’s a sudden escape from the impending rush hour traffic snarl up. There are fields, willows swaying beside ponds, acres of knee high long grass and everywhere herds of fallow deer really close up to you. You arrive at the far end of the long water and it’s a tremendous view along it to the Palace in the distance. Also you get your first sight of the giant white marquees that have grown over the last week and which will house the indoor displays of the Hampton Court Flower Show.

At the security gate we are checked to make sure we have our passes, safety boots and yellow hi viz safety jackets, then its on to stands C/93 that will become Rachels Passion for Taste Garden,  and C/94 Rachels Stylish by Nature Garden.

Time will pass so quickly now and we must press on. The core team is myself, organising, taking the decisions and primarily their as plantsman and support. My right hand man is Martin who is an incredible work machine and will construct all the non specialist elements of both gardens. Finally Graeme who is there to support us both and generally gets all the worst jobs! We will get extra input from various specialist sub contractors as the job progresses to take the exhibit through to completion.

Im pleased to find the RHS have already erected Rachels Sampling Stand Marquee which sits behind our gardens. So we start by removing all the grass in our allocated 150 sqm plot with Martin on the digger and me enjoying driving a 2 tonne dumper for a change, removing the excavations to a near by stockpile. The weather is fantastic, warm and slightly overcast and I begin to enjoy the feeling of the private world that is the Hampton Court Flower Show build up. With this done we are able to lay the recycled plastic cellular grid system around the Marquee as Silverland Stone company are the first to arrive with this and bags of the black and white chips that will fill the grids to provide a non slip, wheelchair friendly and dry surface for everyone visiting Rachels stand when they are sampling the foods or viewing the Gardens. Further deliveries arrive from Tendercare Nurseries (the bigger trees need to go in early), Putney Builders Merchants (sundry building materials and timber), and Ashwell Recycled Timber Ltd (with the Jarrah sleepers for the Passion for Taste Garden)

Saturday we get cooked! Martins phone says its 35 degrees and my car at 4pm says its 33 degrees! But we have a great day and move forwards really well. We are joined by Phil who cuts the Jarrah sleepers to all the lengths and angles we need. Ive set out the Garden shapes and Martin lays the Passion for Taste pathways. Graeme begins the arduous job of filling the grid system with the stone chips. Martin and I also get most of the big pot size trees planted in Passion for Taste. And suddenly after 2 days we have one garden coming to life!


Hampton Court Palace Flower Show; Paul Stone for Rachel's Organic



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