‘The Collectors Garden’ - RHS Malvern Spring Festival garden May 2018
This garden was designed to celebrate the redevelopment of the Royal Porcelain Works in Worcester with the planting relocated after the show to the new central courtyard garden I designed for the RPW. The show garden provides a mix of history and modernity by linking the Victorian heritage of the Royal Porcelain Works site with its exciting new re-developed 21st century role as a centre for the performing arts and modern crafts.
Featured in the Show Garden’s exhibition spaces are five stone plinths. Three of the plinths display glass bell jars containing historic Royal Worcester pieces, which are painted with horticultural designs. The planting surrounding the plinths includes some of the plants and foliage featured on the Royal Worcester pieces. Two further plinths display bespoke Terrariums, I based the design on an original Wardian Case. Despite their Victorian design influence, these contemporary Terrariums bring gardening right up-to-date, illustrating how young millennial gardeners known as “generation rent,” can still engage with nature, even in a restricted urban environment.
The planting scheme for ‘The Collectors Garden’ celebrates the plants and shrubs collected by Victorian plant hunters such as Nandina domestica introduced by William Kerr in 1804, Acer palmatum introduced in 1832 by John Russell Reeves (Junior), Euonymus & Hosta fortunei and Viburnum plicatum brought into this country by Robert Fortune from China.
I was proud to be able to collaborate with 2 very talented artists who both created bespoke works for the garden - 2 groups of figures depicting workers from the Royal Porcelain Works by Simon Conolly, sculptor and bespoke ceramic planters by Mark de la Torre. Both produced lovely modern day collections celebrating the spirit of the show garden.
Simon Conolly - sculptureinclay.co.uk
Mark de la Torre - delatorre.co.uk
Photo Credit for John Campbell - roomoflight.com