The Complete Guide To The Chelsea Flower Show

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Between May 23rd and 27th, thousands of people will be heading to London’s Royal Hospital Chelsea for the famed Chelsea Flower Show.

Unrivalled around the world, the event is arguably the highlight of any flower lover’s calendar and attendees will want to get the most out of the experience. It is a very special event that draws visitors from across the globe.

If you are looking for something special to incorporate into your calendar. The RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2017 is an occasion not to be missed.

Here’s our beginners guide of everything you need to know about this event – from when it’s on, where it is, to how to get your tickets!

What Is The Chelsea Flower Show?

The world’s most prestigious flower show that inspires millions through showcasing the best in garden design.

The Chelsea flower Show is organised by The Royal Horticultural Society, one of the world’s leading horticultural organisations and the UK’s leading gardening charity.

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When is it? The show takes place between 23rd – 27th May. Show times are between 8am – 8pm Tuesday – Friday, and 8am – 5.30pm on Saturday. Sell-off begins at 4pm.

Chelsea Flower Show 2017 tickets are currently on sale! They’ll be cheaper when you buy in advance as prices increase nearer the date. These tickets sell out quickly as people fly in from all over the world to pay a visit. You can buy your tickets from the RHS website. Here you’ll find the complete price list.

History Of The Chelsea Flower Show

Formerly known as The Great Spring Show, it was held at The Temple Garden until 1913 when it moved to Chelsea Hospital. Where it has been ever since and has famously become known as The Chelsea Flower Show.

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Ever since, this famous flower show has been attracting visitors from all over the world to Chelsea in order to admire the avant-garde show gardens across a range of styles from artisan to fresh gardens, as well as other, smaller but equally impressive features.

Fast forward 100 years and the RHS Chelsea Flower Show is still one of the most elaborate and colourful spectacles to be enjoyed in London. In 2017, the show is taking place over five days, starting from the 23rd of May. It will be held in the grounds of the Royal Hospital Chelsea.

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With around 550 exhibitors, including show gardens, floral displays, nursery stands and gardening sundries. Todays show is a fabulous mixture of tradition and innovation, from old-fashioned roses to the latest trends in garden design or furniture. It can be bewildering but it is always a wonderful day out.

Show Gardens

You can’t visit the Chelsea Flower Show without taking the time out to marvel at the magnificent show gardens. Also, benificially there are many to choose from. Like previous years, there will be some true show-stopping features in 2017 that you simply have to see – these include:

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  • The Silk Road Garden, Chengdu China is architect Laurie Chetwood
  • ‘500 Years of Covent Garden supported by Capco’ by Lee Bestall
  • ‘The Royal Bank of Canada Garden’ by debut designer Charlotte Harris
  • Design duo Andrew Wilson and Gavin McWilliams with ‘Breaking Ground’

Make sure that you plan your visit to take in all of these highlights in full. To guarantee that you won’t have to rush around and miss out on anything else in the show.

chelsea flower show 2017 gardens

However, the show gardens are always covered comprehensively on television. So, if you feel you miss out on the day, watch the coverage when you get home. If you manage to make your way to the front of the crowd, study plant combinations carefully, take photographs and jott down notes.

For more information on some of the previous garden designers, click here.

Planning Your Chelsea Flower Show Visit

In order to make sure that your visit is a real success, here is a quick checklist to follow:

1) Book your tickets– this is a very popular show and as such, tickets sell out quickly. Make sure you book your tickets in advance.

2) Travel– if you haven’t been to the Royal Hospital Chelsea before then it is a good idea to know how to make your way there. The postcode for the venue is SW3 4SL. However, the event will be well signposted throughout the area, making travel very easy.

3) Food and drink– there are plenty of facilities available to provide you with a wide array of food and drink at the Chelsea Flower Show, offering everything from the quintessentially British fish and chips to a gourmet three-course meal.

4) What to wear– there’s no dress code at the Chelsea flower show, so feel free to wear whatever you are most comfortable in, but if you are having a special day out, its best to opt for something smart. Gentlemen typically wear blazers and trousers, while the ladies wear dresses with jackets or cardigans.

5) Walking shoes– whatever you choose to wear, it’s important that you team it with practical, comfortable shoes as a day at Chelsea involves a lot of walking. Remember, there will be a lot of grass and mud around.

6) Bring cash– there’s plenty to splash your cash on at Chelsea from flowers to glasses of Champagne, so if you want to treat yourself make sure you take some cash.

7) Take an umbrella– Chelsea is vulnerable to the Great British weather and downpours are common so make sure you have an umbrella or waterproof jacket with you.

And don’t forget to have fun! For more details about the show visit the RHS website.

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