The latest design news

Read our monthly selection of stories from the garden design world.

Chris Beardshaw's design for Ellerslie

Ellerslie International Flower Show

This year’s Ellerslie Flower Show, in Christchurch, New Zealand, is the biggest in the show’s 15-year history, with 30 show gardens and almost 100 horticultural exhibitions. UK designer Chris Beardshaw has the largest plot for his show garden at 12m x 64m, stretching along the shore of Hagley Park’s Victoria Lake. His design has a hedged entrance that leads through wrought-iron gates to a formal section with deep borders and a grand lawn sweeping up to an open-sided portico with potted palms and citrus fruits. This opens on to a more informal area with rhododendrons, camellias, Japanese maples, ferns and a wildflower meadow.
10-14 March,


Green Roofs

A new line in roll-on living turf for green roofs and slopes is launched by Lindum at this month’s Eco Build (see Notebook). The Biodiverse Green Roof Mat is a drought-tolerant mixture of wildflowers, herbs, flowering perennials and sedums which, unlike the taller Lindum Wildflower mat, will not need cutting – just the occasional dead heading.
Tel 01904 448675,


New designer borders at Sussex Prairies

London-based landscape and garden designer Jane Brockbank, winner of a gold medal at Chelsea last year with Angus Thompson for their ‘Nature Ascending’ urban garden, has teamed up with Paul and Pauline McBride of Sussex Prairies to offer designs that incorporate the McBrides’ romantic planting schemes of perennials and grasses. “I like collaborating and Paul and Pauline have such an eye for great plants – they are constantly playing with new varieties.”,


New garden

The first phase of what will be the largest Japanese stroll garden in the UK starts this spring at Chiddingstone Castle in Kent with the planting of a cherry grove in the 35-acre grounds. The Japanese garden, which includes a tea garden, a pagoda, a nature garden and woodland play area, will spill out from the Victorian rose garden and bedding displays. The design incorporates the existing lake and mature Japanese plants, including bamboos, cherries and acers, which were planted by former owner Denys Bower (whose collection of Japanese artefacts is on view in the house). “The foundations for a Japanese garden were already there,” explains designer Marie Jackson. “All we’re doing is enhancing it.” It is hoped that the design will be completed in three to five years.


• These are just a few of the stories covered in the Design News pages of Gardens Illustrated each month. Pick up a copy to read the full selection.

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