Opening Day at the Chelsea Flower Show

Sustainability, gnomes, living walls and sculptural garden effects reign at this most royal of flower shows.
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Photo By: Image courtesy of Felicia Feaster

Photo By: Image courtesy of Felicia Feaster

Photo By: Image courtesy of Felicia Feaster

Photo By: Image courtesy of Felicia Feaster

Photo By: Image courtesy of Felicia Feaster

Photo By: Image courtesy of Felicia Feaster

Photo By: Image courtesy of Felicia Feaster

Photo By: Image courtesy of Felicia Feaster

Photo By: Image courtesy of Felicia Feaster

Photo By: Image courtesy of Felicia Feaster

Photo By: Image courtesy of Felicia Feaster

Photo By: Image courtesy of Felicia Feaster

Photo By: Image courtesy of Felicia Feaster

Photo By: Image courtesy of Felicia Feaster

Photo By: Image courtesy of Felicia Feaster

Photo By: Image courtesy of Felicia Feaster

Photo By: Image courtesy of Felicia Feaster

Photo By: Image courtesy of Felicia Feaster

Photo By: Image courtesy of Felicia Feaster

Photo By: Image courtesy of Felicia Feaster

Photo By: Image courtesy of Felicia Feaster

Photo By: Image courtesy of Felicia Feaster

Photo By: Image courtesy of Felicia Feaster

Photo By: Image courtesy of Felicia Feaster

Photo By: Image courtesy of Felicia Feaster

Photo By: Image courtesy of Felicia Feaster

The M&G Centenary Garden

M&G Investments framed their garden through a striking metal sculpture. The thatched roof of the garden structure was a popular motif at the Chelsea Flower Show. The garden features foxgloves, cottage roses and wild grasses and is designed by Roger Platts.

Gnomes Crashes the Show

Banned for decades, the garden gnome was welcomed at this year's festival and some of the exhibitors—like greenhouse and conservatory manufacturer Alitex—had fun with the idea, as with these two gnome brothers.

Prince Harry's Garden

The B&Q Sentebale Forget-Me-Not-Garden is designed by Jinny Blom and inspired by Prince Harry's charity Sentebale, devoted to helping African children impacted by poverty and AIDS/HIV.

A Roof Garden

Green walls are a big theme at the Chelsea Flower Show this year. This living wall is designed by Nigel Dunnett for the RBC Blue Water Roof Garden that imagines an urban rooftop garden as a way to bring greenery into the city in new form.

Green Roof

A worker puts the finishing touches on the RBC Blue Water Roof Garden which features a green roof, wall plantings, water feature and a bird habitat.

Bamboo Islands

The RBC Garden features bamboo islands "floating" inside its water feature.

A Bubbly Garden

Champagne Laurent-Perrier sponsored this garden blending features of a French and English garden.

Modern Pavilion

A modern copper pavilion includes a water feature that seems to spring from an underground source and recalls La Louve garden in Provence.

Asarum europaeum AGM

Featured in the Laurent-Perrier Garden, this reliable groundcover plant offers attractive foliage that works in shady spaces.

Viola Cornuta 'Victoria's Blush' and Viola Corsica

Viola corsica (center) surrounded by Viola cornuta 'Victoria's Blush' in Swedish designer Ulf Nordfjell's Laurent-Perrier Garden.

Anemone 'Wild Swan'

Anemone 'Wild Swan' featured in the Laurent-Perrier Garden.

Pest Control

Designer Jo Thompson's Stop the Spread garden uses an avenue of dead trees against an ominous black pool, which is set against a thriving woodland garden to send a warning message about the danger of pests, non-native invasive species and disease.

Aussie Garden

A crowd favorite, the Trailfinders Australian Garden features a solar powered artist's retreat with an indoor shower and is meant to reference an abstraction of the Waratah flower. The garden is by Melbourne designer Phillip Johnson.

Garden Drama

Dramatic sculptural forms are a frequent motif at the Chelsea Flower Show.

Abstract Flower

Garden art formed from nature is prominent at Chelsea, including these flowers crafted from steel and woven willow by artist Rachel Carter. The garden mulch in the foreground is formed from shredded rubber.

Formal Properties

Chelsea is a reminder that gardens are not just plants: simple artworks like this circle crafted from stones brings a pleasingly circular focal point to a garden.

Chelsea Garland

A clever shout-out to the 100-year-old Chelsea Flower Show.

Outdoor Living

This New Zealand garden boasts a contemporary outdoor room and is sponsored by Cloudy Day vineyards in the Marlborough region of the country.

Green Rising

Created by Willmott Whyte Landscape and Design, this Conversation Garden illustrates how land art can be used even in small garden spaces.

British Bench

A beautiful metal circular bench gets some British flair.

Sunken Living Room

Sunken outdoor rooms appeared in several Chelsea gardens. The advantage of a sunken room is a retreat from wind and a feeling of privacy in the garden.

Poetic Space

The Massachusetts Garden is an homage to poet Emily Dickinson and features leather panels with embroidered flowers.

Orange Crush

Containers in a bold orange color would add originality to any garden.

Divided Space

The SeeAbility Garden uses metal and wood structures to creatively divide garden space.

Circle of Life

Metal circles are a striking way to delineate garden space. Many Chelsea gardens use sculptural elements as a way to define and distinguish gardens, mixing contemporary features with plants and flowers.

An Environmental Message

Created by Kate Gould Gardens, The Wasteland mixes plantings with shocking industrial touches like a cast iron bathtub, metal grates and shopping carts and mattress springs transformed into garden screens.

Urban Garden

Concrete, metal pipes and a ravaged landscape give The Wasteland a power environmental message about transforming neglected urban spaces into beautiful gardens. Designer Kate Gould has won gold, silver and best in show awards at Chelsea.

Lush Life

A memorable mix of scale, texture and color defines the Arthritis Research UK Garden by designer Chris Beardshaw featuring Iris Supreme Sultan, Lupinus Masterpiece, Lunaria Corfu Blue, Tanacetum parthenium, Escholtzia californica and Anchusa Loddon Royalist.

English Daisies

A charming arrangement of English daisies at the Chelsea Flower Show.

Designer Patrick Collins

Designer Patrick Collins created his garden, supporting sick and premature babies at St. George's Hospital, with graduated small and large plantings that echo the idea of a mother and child.

In the Details

Designers at Chelsea, who often work in conjunction with charities, feature an incredible degree of detail and subtext in their designs. Working to highlight the issue of sick and premature babies, designer Patrick Collins used plantings that echoed the theme of cellular growth and development in plantings. These saxifraga 'White Star' move from small to large and even the pebbles progress from small to large.