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August 2011

The RBC Blue Water Garden Chelsea Flower Show 2012

Nigel Dunnett with


Concept

The garden is a private, enclosed space and includes a full range of water conser vation features, together with wildlife-friendly elements.

Most ‘sustainable’ gardens, take a naturalistic and organic form, however the RBC Blue Water garden is geometric in structure and shows how even the most formal of gardens can be environmentally-beneficial.

Today, water is equally valuable: a resource to be conser ved, preser ved and treasured. And again, in a different way, water is at the ver y heart of the sustainable garden.

All rainwater runoff (including that from the pavilion roof) drains into a central bio-swale that takes the form of a double rill along the main path through the garden, and excess runoff is collected in the reflecting pools.

The RBC Blue Water Garden shows how rain garden and water conser vation concepts can be used in the most formal of settings.

The planting is dramatic, colour ful and naturalistic in Nigel Dunnett ’s typical style, and is loosely modelled on beautiful examples of dr y meadows from around the world (i.e little or no irrigation is required)

The garden built structures (walls, buildings and seats) are based on dramatic vernacular architecture and landscapes of the same areas.

The garden is geometric in structure, with strong focal points, and a satisfying interplay of buildings, paths, planting and water

The RBC Blue Water Garden Chelsea Flower Show 2012


Supporting Images

‘Paradise Gardens’ at the Alhambra, Grenada, Spain:

Water at the heart of the garden in an arid landscape

Traditional gardens of arid lands placed water at the centre of the garden: water channels, rills and reflecting pools celebrated water, and to create a cool and refreshing environment in the arid landscape. Lush planting added to the atmosphere of peace and beauty. Today, water is equally valuable: a resource to be conserved, preserved and treasured. And again, in a different way, water is at the very heart of the sustainable garden. Bio-swales can take the place of the rill and water channel, creating linear elements in the garden, Rainwater collecting pools become the reflecting pool , and dramatic naturalistic planting creates a joyful setting, with no need for irrigation.

radise  Gardens’  at  the   ambra,  Grenada,  Spain:  

ter  at  the  heart  of  the  garden  in   arid  landscape  

Images     Supporting   Supporting   Images    

 

 

 

 

‘Paradise  Gardens’  at  the   Alhambra,  Grenada,  Spain:  

‘Paradise  Gardens’  at  the   Water   at  the  G hrenada,   eart  of  the   garden Alhambra,   Spain:   an  arid  landscape    

Water  at  the  heart  of  the  gar an  arid  landscape    

The RBC Blue Water Garden Chelsea Flower Show 2012


Supporting Images Drystone stacked structures of the Gordes region, Provence, France and The trulli houses in Valle d’Itria, Italy

  local stone and gravels, and the natural The interplay of vernacular architecture, drystone walls,   vegetation of dry places forms the starting point for the design of the garden. Images taken from       the Gordes region, Provence, France and The trulli houses in Valle d’Itria, Italy. The garden has a simple palette of materials: natural stones and gravels,   white lime-washed walls, pale blue water features and door and window frames.

 

 

Drystone  stacked   structures  of  the   Gordes  region,   Provence,  France  

Drystone  stacked   structures  of  the   Gordes  region,   Provence,  France  

The RBC Blue Water Garden Chelsea Flower Show 2012


Supporting Images

Swales: linear landscape elements for collecting and moving rainwater runoff

Bio-swales are linear vegetated features that collect rainwater runoff and either transport   it or enable it to   infiltrate back into the ground. They can be richly planted and have high ecological value. In a garden or park     setting they can be dramatic features (e.g top right at the London Olympic Park, where bioswales follow the main path network) Typical swales contain a mix of open water, and planting. In dry weather they may not contain water, and they may fill up completely in very wet weather (bottom right)

   

   

 

Swales:  lin Swales:   l inear   l andscape   e lements   fof Swales:  linear  landscape  ecollecting lements   collecting   and   mm oving   rainwater   run collecting   and   oving   rainwater   ru

The RBC Blue Water Garden Chelsea Flower Show 2012


Planting Strategy Tall Lilium martagon Mix.  Masses of dramatic Turks Cap  Short Penstemon and Poppy Mix.  Beautiful blue  Woodland Mix.  A cool underplanting with  Lilies emerging through white umbellifers.  Predominantly  and purple penstemons, with grey‐leaved  white violas, green ferns, grasses and  pink, purple, white and blue perennials and grasses. grasses and textural plants, interspersed with  perennials, with scattered black‐leaved  emergent poppies of soft apricot.   Actaea 200 25 25 5 100 100 75 200 50 50 20 30 200 100 5 100 25 300 100

Alchemilla erythropoda Ammi majus Ammi visnaga Angelica sylvestris 'Vicar's Mead' Asphodelus albus Astrantia 'Roma' Atriplex hortensis rubra Briza media Centaurea cyanus Cirsium rivulare 'atropurpureum' Clematis recta 'Moonlight' Erysimon 'Bowles Mauve' Lilium martagon Linum rubrun Melanoselinum decipiens Melica altissima alba Molopospermum peloponnesiacum Orlaya grandiflora Salvia nemorosa 'May Night'

Beautiful blue  Woodland Mix.  A cool underplanting with  ey‐leaved  white violas, green ferns, grasses and  persed with  perennials, with scattered black‐leaved  pricot.   Actaea 30 50 100 100 100 350

Actaea simplex 'Brunette' Aquilegia 'Green Apples' Epimedium ‘Frohnleiten’ Luzula Hohe Tatra Onoclea sensibilis Viola cornuta 'alba'

5 100 30 50 200 100 30 50 15 50 20 100 30

Agave striata  Allium cernuum Artemisia 'Valerie Finnis' Consolida ambigua Festuca 'Elijah Blue' Hordeum jubatum Papavar spicatum Penstemon 'Heavenly Blue' Penstemon 'Raven' Scabiosa columbaria nana Scabiosa ochroleuca Sesleria nitida Verbascum blatteria albiflorum

30 50 100 100 100 350

Actaea simplex 'Brunette' Aquilegia 'Green Apples' Epimedium ‘Frohnleiten’ Luzula Hohe Tatra Onoclea sensibilis Viola cornuta 'alba'

Bio‐Swale Mix.  Purple Thalictrums and blue  Trees.  A grove of Gleditsia 'Sunburst'  Iris emerging through white and pink  pavillion, while tall Fraxinus on the perennials, with grasses.   perimeter screen surrounding bui

100 50 100 100 100 50 100

Key Plan

Anthericum liliago Deschampsia cespitosa Iris latifolia Lychnis flos‐cuculi Lychnis flos‐cuculi 'Alba' Thalictrum 'Black Stocking' Thalictrum 'Ellin'

7 Gleditsia triacanthos 'Sunbur 10 Fraxinus Excelsoir 'Westoff's 

Bio‐Swale Mix.  Purple Thalictrums and blue  Trees.  A grove of Gleditsia 'Sunburst' frames the  Iris emerging through white and pink  pavillion, while tall Fraxinus on the garden  perennials, with grasses.   perimeter screen surrounding buildings

100 50 100 100 100 50 100

Anthericum liliago Deschampsia cespitosa Iris latifolia Lychnis flos‐cuculi Lychnis flos‐cuculi 'Alba' Thalictrum 'Black Stocking' Thalictrum 'Ellin'

7 Gleditsia triacanthos 'Sunburst' 10 Fraxinus Excelsoir 'Westoff's Glorie'

'

orum

The RBC Blue Water Garden Chelsea Flower Show 2012


Supporting Images - planting strategy  

 

 

 

 

 

Formal vistas and structures

Asphodel

Naturalistic plantings of dry regions Formal  vistas  and   Formal  vistas  and   strutures   strutures   Naturalistic  plantings  of   Naturalistic   plantings  of   dry  regions   dry  regions   i.e  Martagon  lilies  in  the   i.e  Martagon   in  the  scree   wild  on  lilies   mountain   wild  on  mountain  scree  

Formal  vistas  and   strutures  

Naturalistic  plantings  of   dry  regions   i.e  Martagon  lilies  in  the   wild  on  mountain  scree  

Lilium martagon

The RBC Blue Water Garden Chelsea Flower Show 2012


Supporting Images - planting strategy

Woodland mix Short penstemon/poppy mix

Bioswale mix

The RBC Blue Water Garden Chelsea Flower Show 2012


Plan

Key Key vista

Trees

04

Clipped Hornbeam Hedge - 1.8-2m high

Planting

Limestone paving

03

Bound gravel

Lime washed rendered walls 05

Water - rill

Garden Features

02

01

Central double rill - bio-swale

02

A sequence of low white lime washed walls of graduated height provides formal structure

03

Strong vistas along a formal double axis

04

The Garden Pavilion - based on the distinctive ‘Trulli ’ buildings of Puglia, Italy, and has a conical ‘dr y stone’ roof, with white lime wash walls

01

05

0m

5m

Timber benches located at the end of the cross axis create a peaceful seating area

10m

The RBC Blue Water Garden Chelsea Flower Show 2012


A’

Sections

Sectional Elevation AA’

B

A

B’

Sectional Elevation BB’

The RBC Blue Water Garden Chelsea Flower Show 2012


Perspective Views Overview of garden design

The RBC Blue Water Garden Chelsea Flower Show 2012


Perspective Views Main view along rill to ‘ Trulli’ inspired garden pavilion

The RBC Blue Water Garden Chelsea Flower Show 2012


Perspective Views Lime-washed graduated walls as a backdrop to naturalistic planting

The RBC Blue Water Garden Chelsea Flower Show 2012


Blue Water Garden Design Concept