Art of Viking Garden will reflect Nordic heritage

Viking, the award-winning river and ocean cruise line will be returning to RHS Chelsea Flower Show in 2019 with a garden in the Space to Grow category, once again designed by RHS Gold-medallist Paul Hervey-Brookes.

Following on from last year’s success when Viking’s wellness garden and designer Paul achieved a Gold Medal, this seventh garden for RHS Chelsea – The Art of Viking – will be reminiscent of a water meadow, open and inviting with multi-stem river birches and winding streams running through the space. A signature feature of all Viking’s RHS gardens, water is a key element of the design.

This is the first time that Viking have entered a garden in the Space to Grow category at Chelsea, and for this year Paul has taken his inspiration from the textures, plants and colour palette of artwork on board Viking’s newest ocean ship, Viking Orion including a painting by Norwegian impressionist Jakob Weidemann, ‘Impressions of Nature‘ and ceramic plates by Anette Krogstad.

The centrepiece of the garde – a unique sculpture created by Paul (pictured left) especially for Viking – exposes, by varying degrees, the landscape beyond. It reflects the sense of curiosity and discovery shared by all of Viking’s guests.

Managing Director of Viking, Wendy Atkin-Smith, who has worked closely with Paul on the design of the 2019 Garden, commented: “We chose art as the main theme of our garden for 2019 as it weaves together two aspects of Viking’s heritage – a sense of discovery through travel and art and an appreciation for nature which is deeply ingrained in Scandinavian culture.”

Paul is thrilled to once again be working with Viking: “I have been lucky enough to experience their river and ocean cruises and the whole ethos of the brand, not to mention its design aesthetic, is very much in-keeping with my own,” he says. “I was overwhelmed by the incredible art collection on board Viking’s ocean ships, so it was not hard to find inspiration for the 2019 garden.  In fact, Jakob Weidemann has always been one of my favourite artists so imagine how excited I was to see an original painting by him on Viking Orion.  The Art of Viking garden offers the opportunity to take a space everyone can relate to and provide inspiration beyond the obvious or normal layout of a garden,” he added.

The garden will be built by Big Fish Landscapes and feature materials supplied by the Breedon Group. The Plants will be grown by specialists at Jekka’s Herb Farm and Bernhards Nurseries. Chosen for their connection with Scandinavia, key plants featured in the Art of Viking garden will include Salix ‘Nancy Saunders’, Angelica archangelica, Juncus ‘Carmans Grey’ and Symphytum caucasium.

The RHS Chelsea Flower Show runs from 21st to 25th May 2019 and you will find Paul’s garden on Plot RHS/285.

Picture credits: All images ©Viking and Paul Hervey-Brookes.