RHS Flower Show Tatton Park - 2022

RHS Flower Show Tatton Park is one of my favourite RHS shows and one I struggle to attend in a usual year.  Work commitments usually makes Tatton really hard to get to, but in that strange twist that sometimes happens, the lockdowns made it possible in the last two years.  I enjoyed being able to visit again so much I asked if I could be able to go this year and was lucky enough to have my wish granted.
This year I went with my daughter who sometimes comes to Chelsea with me and other garden shows but had never been to Tatton previously.  Her verdict on the day therefore was crucial, more of which of course later.  
I love Tatton Flower Show, have I mentioned that?  It is a show that is friendly, with fantastic shopping opportunities and it has space.  In places it did get a little crowded but you could step away really quickly and find some space for yourself.  I did not buy one of these tree pictures, I did buy other things and one of these tree pictures is on my list, but I have to pace myself as I cannot buy everything at once.
Firstly we wandered past the Greener Borders.  This one is the W-E Border designed by Queenie Chan.  I love how they show how much you can do with really quite a small space.
This is The Healing Garden designed by Camellia Hayes, wouldn't you just love to sit in the chair?
and this is the Weeders and Bloomers Garden designed by HMP Styal and YOI.  I liked this garden not only for how it looked but for what it looks like (and it looks very good) but for what it represents.  It is inspired by the history of women working in gardens: of women workers on the prison farms (HMP Styal is a women's prison) and women who worked on estates weeding and other chores.  The garden is created by women inmates of the prison who have learned how to garden whilst there.  
The Greener Front Gardens were a delight.  They were a good size to represent a front garden.  Front gardens where they exist can be all shapes and sizes, so going for a set space that all the designers had to fit into was a good idea I thought.  This is the Journey Home garden designed by volunteers from the Petrus Community, a homelessness charity and Rachael Bennion.  To have a front garden means you have a home and this garden aims to encourage reflection about what 'home' means and how you get to have your own front door.  A moment to pause and reflect indeed.
This is 'Paradise Retained' designed by Julie Dunn.  This garden shows how you can be wildlife friendly and still have a parking space in your front garden.  Key to this design are the beautifully brightly coloured SUDS-compliant parking tiles.  (SUDS = Sustainable Urban Drainage system).  Fab isn't it?
As we wander around the show we mused on our 'if we won the lottery' purchases.  You know the sort of thing: you are pretty sure you will never have the disposable cash to buy such a thing but if you did have then it would be on the list.  These tree water-features are very much on that list.  I admit I don't really know how much they cost because I live by the principle of 'if you have to ask the price you can't afford it'.
One of the many reasons I love Tatton is that it has so many different types of gardens to look at.  These are the School Allotments.  This one was my favourite.
though I might have nightmares about giant killer carrots trying to eat me.....
Back in the Green Front Gardens this is the Could Car Less garden designed by Christine Leung with the Talking Root in Bootle Community Growers.
This garden packs a lot of ideas into a small space.  I loved the green roof. 
and the great eye for detail.  
This is The Covid Recovery Garden, one of the Young Designer of the Year gardens.  It is designed by Rachel Platt.  This garden aims to give restorative space to those suffering with Long Covid.
This Young Designer Garden is Paradise Found designed by Tom Clarke.  This too has a Covid theme as it aims to be a sanctuary and a peaceful place.  
and this is the Working from Home garden designed by Will Scholey, who won the Young Designer of the Year award with this garden.  It is no surprise that Covid is a major theme in the gardens, it has been a major theme in our lives for more than two years now.
This is the RHS and BBC North West Community Urban Garden.  This is also where having my daughter with me adds a new focus and perspective I might not have otherwise have looked at so closely.  I was looking at the planters and the benches and thinking how good they were.  My daughter was looking at the pavers that have been displaced to enable planting and said what a great idea that was and how totally doable.  
We also admired this wonderful water bowl in the BBC Radio 2 and The One Show's Sow Grow and Show Garden.  Whilst this is but one section it shows how you can recreate parts of a show garden you don't have to do the whole thing.  I love this enormous copper bowl.  It is also in that 'if I won the lottery' category.
One of the things I love at Tatton is to wander into the vegetable/fruit competition area.  I admit that showing veg/flowers is not my thing, I do not have the ability never mind the patience; but I love seeing what skilled growers have achieved.
Life might be too short to stuff a mushroom as Shirley Conran once said, and for me life might be too short to arrange a courgette; but I am actually always happy that people do.

Sooo, I hear you ask, did you perchance make a purchase?
Well yes my dears I did.  Remember when at Hampton Court I had said that I had held back from buying hostas as I knew as I coming to Tatton?  Well I was true to my word.

I bought 'Praying Hands'
and 'Snake Eyes'.  I love the colours and the shapes of the leaves.  Now I know that you know that I have a complicated relationship with hostas.  I have still not got the love for the very big leaved ones but I do like these very much.  I also knew exactly where they were going to go and they are now happily settling in to the Exotic Border where they make great underplanting for the tree ferns.
I also bought this mirror for this corner of the Courtyard Garden.  It was cheap and cheerful, too much of a bargain to resist.  I have thought about buying a mirror for the garden for some time but did not want to commit too much money to it in case it turned out I did not like the look of it.  I also worry about birds flying into them and other general anxieties.  This one however fits in well in this dark corner and I think (hope) is too low for any avian accidents.

I had a really good day.  The weather was not too hot and we saw lots to enjoy and lots to inspire us.  A good day indeed.  My daughter's verdict was that she really enjoyed Tatton and would love to go again next year.  This shall be so.

Take care and be kind.

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