Almost 90 retailers took part in this year’s Chelsea in Bloom floral art show, an unprecedented number for the prestigious event, and the judging panel faced a difficult task of selecting the winners from the great variety and overwhelming spectacle on display.
The judges based their decision on originality, quality of finish and planting choice, overall effect and interpretation of the theme, which, this year, is Under The Sea.
There was much deliberation about the winner, with Hackett scooping the top prize for its outstanding interpretation of Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, the 1870 Jules Verne novel, complete with yellow submarine and deep-sea divers, a purple-tentacled octopus and other aquatic life.
While dramatic on a macro scale, the display featured hundreds of varieties of plants and flowers and was a fascinating sight up-close as well.
In a first for Chelsea in Bloom, the judges awarded two Highly Commended prizes. Kiki McDonough’s playful octopus and Smithson’s ombré coral were both exceptional in their execution and charm.
Hedge fund Marshall Wace was awarded the Innovation Award for it’s stirring installation of rubbish collected from “The Big Beach Clean”, an annual event organised by charity Surfers Against Sewage, topped by a “sea” of fresh hydrangeas, gypsophila and limonium sinuatum.
The show runs until Saturday, May 25, and you can still vote for your favourite in the People’s Choice Award at www.chelseainbloom.co.uk. Voting closes at midnight on Friday, May 24.
And make sure to download the map of all the participants here.