This week is a big one for the English summer social season. Wimbledon started yesterday, Henley begins tomorrow, and today holds a special opening of its own: the RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show. This year marks the 25th anniversary of the show, which attracts 150,000 visitors and covers a vast area next to the famous royal residence. It’s the world’s largest flower show, and yesterday I got a sneak peek. Here’s what’s in store…

Hampton Court Palace Flower Show

This year’s RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show has a dedicated World Gardens section with different corners of the globe represented through special show gardens. Featured destinations include Turkey, the Aegean, Normandy, Sri Lanka, and the USA. As a travel blogger, I naturally started my visit there.

Hampton Court Palace Flower Show

U.S. ambassador Matthew Barzun was present in the Boston garden, and I managed to snap a few photos of him as he spoke to the press.

Matthew Barzun

Next door, I got a chance to catch up with James Priest, the head gardner at Monet’s garden in Giverny. He designed the Normandy garden as a miniature version of the famous one he looks after in France.

James Priest

I asked him about the garden, and he said that he “tried to capture a little bit of Monet’s garden to show the English. The most evocative element of the garden is the Japanese bridge,” and he wanted to convey that with a replica. “In Normandy there are over 100 beautiful gardens that are worth visiting,” he continued. While Monet’s is certainly the most famous, there are plenty of others worthy of exploring.

Hampton Court Palace Flower Show

And there are plenty of others worthy of exploring at the RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show.

Hampton Court Palace Flower Show

Leaving the World Gardens, I took a wander through the fragrant Festival of Roses, the gorgeous Summer Gardens, and the spectacular Show Gardens, soaking up the atmosphere and browsing the garden goods for sale.

Hampton Court Palace Flower Show

My favorite garden was the Living Landscapes City Twitchers garden by CouCou Design. Its lovely table and pretty little birdhouses were surrounded by delicate white roses and a nest-like seating area. I could have settled in for the whole afternoon.

Hampton Court Palace Flower Show

Another that caught my eye was the Living Landscapes HUG garden by Rae Wilkinson Design Ltd. I loved the purple and green color scheme and the curving form of the natural wood bench in the center.

Hampton Court Palace Flower Show

A third that caught my eye with its brilliant flowers and cozy seating area turned out to be Just Retirement’s “A Garden for Every Retiree”. Clearly I’m ready for my golden years.

Hampton Court Palace Flower Show

And for good reason. The show is so big and covers such a vast amount of territory that I will probably be old enough to retire by the time I make my way through the whole thing.

Hampton Court Palace Flower Show

Add to that the fact that the aforementioned Henley Royal Regatta starts tomorrow and the Formula 1 British Grand Prix takes place at Silverstone on Friday, and there’s a lot to do this week. When it’s all over, I’ll head back to the flower show, settle into my comfy retiree chair, put my feet up, and sip some Pimm’s—14,274 glasses are consumed here each year. If not golden years, then at least golden hours…

Hampton Court Palace Flower Show

The RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show is open from today until Sunday.

10 Comments on Lady at the Hampton Court Palace Flower Show

  1. NOTHING beats fresh flowers in the sunshine for me, and what a beautiful display they have at Hampton Palace – must try and get down there whilst the sun’s still around! Lots of love, Andrea xxx

  2. Our beautiful bird feeders were included in the City Twitchers garden and I must say we were very proud to be part of such a beautiful space. Sarah did a fantastic job, a shame it has to end! Thanks for the lovely post. (faye at Green&Blue)

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