Chelsea Flower Show 2016

The much-anticipated Chelsea Flower Show is again under way in London, visited by a fine crop of Royals for its first day – Queen Elizabeth and Prince Phillip, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Prince Harry, Princess Anne, the Countess of Wessex, Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie and their father Prince Andrew, Princess Alexandra, Prince and Princess Michael of Kent and the Duchess of Gloucester. Wow!

See some images of the gardens here. Read the Daily Mail’s coverage of the Royals on show here (less about the gardens, more about the people), although it does note that famed English rose breeder David Austin is the same age as the Queen – and also still working!

The striking “red carpet” of hand-knitted poppies began with two Australian women who had a modest plan to crochet 120 poppies as an Anzac Day tribute to their fathers – as you’ll see here, it grew a bit and ended up inspiring 50,000 people around the world to contribute!

The Chelsea Plant of the Year is Clematis chiisanensis Amber. See photos of it and the runners-up here.

The gold medal gardens are announced tonight (NZ time) – I keep seeing tree ferns in the background of pictures of the Queen posing by her floral silhouette. Wine-maker Cloudy Bay has again sponsored a garden – see photos here – but haven’t used native plants.

The Daily Telegraph roundup is an eclectic mix of people, plants and information. Well worth a scroll through. Did you know that the oldest plant thought to be on show at Chelsea is a 117-year-old Cymbidium Lowinanium orchid?

And, finally, The Guardian offers up interviews with the people who make Chelsea tick.

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