RHS Tatton Park gets ready to bloom


The 18th RHS Tatton Park Flower Show, the North-West’s very own RHS Show, is getting ready to bloom once more and welcome visitors to the 28 acre Cheshire site. writes Sandy Felton.

RHS Tatton Park is a key event in the North’s cultural calendar and has earned a special place in the hearts of show-goers, bringing communities together to celebrate the best in local horticultural talent. This year’s show runs from 20th July to 24th July, 2016 and will feature a new Talks Theatre in the Floral Marquee and a new Family Day (23rd July) featuring a host of hands on activities and story-telling.

RHS Tatton hosts a wide variety of show garden categories including the popular back-to-back gardens and the RHS Young Designer of the Year competition. This year, three young designers, Caitlin McLaughlin (Northampton), Robin Dwiar (Gloucestershire) and Lilly Gomm (London) will show their designs and go head-to-head to win the prized accolade.


Pictured above: John Hervey-Brook’s winner of 2015 Best Show Garden (Gold) for Perennial.

In the Show Gardens category, a garden intended for the military, their families and those living with a mental health disorder – ‘Lest we Forget’ designed by Carolyn Hardern – will offer a space for relaxation and contemplation.

Celebrating 100 years since the birth of Roald Dahl, designer Simon Tetlow will delight visitors with ‘BFG: The Big Friendly Garden’, Tatton’s RHS Show Garden. ‘Through the Looking Glass’ designed by Tatton regular, Pip Probert, highlights a garden designed for a family to enjoy spending time together, a design formed on two individual levels, one more formal and chic, the other informal and more natural.


In the Evolution Gardens category, designer Shea O’Neill, has found inspiration by the book ‘Different like Me: My book of Autism Heroes’ by Jennifer Elder. Shea has designed the ‘ACE Kids Spectrum of Genius’ garden as a highly coloured school garden that will provide space for children with additional emotional needs to learn to read. Designer Michael Vinsun’s ‘Plant Evolutions’ will highlight the classifications of plants from liverworts, mosses, horsetails and ferns through to conifers and flowering plants. Also in this category, ‘From Hall to Home’ designed by Michael John McGarr, will demonstrate an urban garden design, inspired by the evolution of garden design from Capability Brown to Piet Oudolf.

In the Back-to-Back category, ‘The Great Escape’ designed by Dave Hodson, is designed for an inner city couple in a deprived run down area offering an escape from the industrial environment around them. ‘An English Stumpery Garden’ designed by Mary Moxon, will inform the public about the existence and concept of stumperies and provide inspiration for this unique form of habitat.

The Garden Hideaway category is very popular with Tatton visitors and 2015 saw some amazing examples. This year, ‘Bed in a Shed’ designed by Holly Fleming has been created for the millennial generation; ‘The Garden Library’ designed by Kelly Brown, will be a sanctuary to escape to and provide an environment to indulge in books and ‘The “Outside-in” Shed’, designed by Karolyn Mowll, will provide an idyllic and peaceful place for a gardener who has spent most of his life in the garden.

Ladies Day on Friday 22nd July, will include the Best Dressed competition and there will be a Fashion Show and popup stands with spa treatments.

Tickets for RHS Tatton Park Flower Show are available from www.rhs.org.uk/tatton

Picture credits: All photographs © Reckless Gardener credit Emma J Campbell Photography – Banner: ‘R Space’ designed by Pip Probert RHS Tatton 2015.