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New Design Unveiled for the RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2024: The Discover More Garden

New Design Unveiled for the RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2024: The Discover More Garden

Viking®, one of the world’s leading travel companies, which offers river, ocean and expedition voyages on all seven continents, today announced a new collaboration with award-winning garden designer Paul Hervey-Brookes at the 2024 RHS Chelsea Flower Show, which will take place from 21 – 25 May. The Discover More Garden sponsored by Viking will act as a gateway welcoming guests into the balcony garden section, showcasing best practices and excellence in horticulture and offering practical tips and inspiration for visitors.

As a long-standing supporter of the RHS, this will be the tenth time Viking has been part of the RHS Chelsea Flower Show – and its third consecutive year of sponsoring a balcony garden.  Viking has previously worked with Paul on several projects including his wellness and art-themed gardens, which were both awarded Gold medals in 2018 and 2019. In 2022, Viking collaborated with William Murray to create The Potting Balcony Garden sponsored by Viking and in 2023 Viking worked in partnership with Christina Cobb on The Restorative Garden sponsored by Viking, both were awarded Silver Gilt medals.

The Discover More Garden sponsored by Viking is a contemporary balcony garden that has taken inspiration from destinations around the world, reflecting the culturally enriching experiences offered by Viking across all seven continents. With travel at its heart, the garden encourages visitors to draw inspiration from their own journeys through different countries – not merely by collecting souvenirs, but also by incorporating the planting, furniture and design of rich and varied cultures to create their own personal, meaningful gardens at home, maximising the use of small spaces.  The balcony garden will showcase the optimum materials, soil types and plants for balcony conditions and for gardeners with limited space.

The theme of transcontinental travel within The Discover More Garden sponsored by Viking is exemplified in the selection of containers and plants, including elements representative of every continent in the world.  Key features include a Cornus mas specimen tree, which, although found globally, is of special significance in Egypt where it is used to make dye; and Sempervivum (houseleek), which has been used medicinally since the Roman era and is an important part of Italian history. Sagina subulata (heath pearlwort) resembles Antarctic moss, one of the only plants that grow in the continent of Antarctica.  The key design feature is a soft wood pergola, which is inspired by the wooden structures of the Wintergarden – a serene space that is found on board all Viking’s ocean ships.  The canopy of Scandinavian trellised wood in the Wintergarden represents the “Tree of Life” in Norse mythology as well as the woodlands native to Norway. 

Wendy Atkin-Smith, Managing Director of Viking UK, said, “We have been proud supporters of the RHS for many years, and this is the third year we have sponsored a balcony garden – they provide great inspiration for how a small outdoor space can create a functional and interesting garden.  All of the staterooms on Viking’s ocean ships have private verandas, so the balcony gardens align well with the design of our ships and our Nordic heritage – as well as our love of the outdoors.  Over the years we have enjoyed hearing how our guests have taken inspiration from their travels with Viking to add flair to their own gardens at home. We want to inspire others to draw on their own travels to incorporate elements from gardens and natural habitats all around the world.

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We have worked with Paul for many years and we have always had a huge appreciation for his talent and creativity.  He has a passion for supporting emerging talent by acting as a mentor to the designers in the balcony garden category who have never exhibited at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show before.  We hope our garden will offer inspiration to all visitors.”

Paul Hervey-Brookes, who is originally from Gloucestershire, has created a number of show gardens including seven at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show, winning multiple awards including Gold medals in 2013, 2018 and 2019.  Overall, Paul has been awarded a total of 13 Gold medals across all the RHS shows and, in recognition of his contribution, he is now an RHS Gardens Judge and a mentor for upcoming designers at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show.  Since studying at the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, Paul has worked with clients in different countries all around the world including Thailand, France and Italy and has exhibited his garden designs at shows in the United States of America, France, New Zealand, Japan, Korea and Australia.

Paul Hervey-Brookes said, “I am very pleased to be working with Viking once again, a brand which is closely aligned with my own values in terms of having a passion for good design and innovation. I am fascinated by the idea that international travel can inspire garden design. Having explored many destinations around the world with Viking myself, I have enjoyed the challenge of incorporating planting from all seven continents into the design, and I am especially pleased to have found an innovative way to represent the continent of Antarctica.  As an ode to Viking’s beautifully designed ocean ships with their all-veranda staterooms, I have incorporated some of my favourite features including the Wintergarden which inspired the soft wood pergola.  As a mentor to up-and-coming designers, I hope The Discover More Garden will help inspire both budding designers and keen gardeners visiting the show.”

The balcony and container garden category is open to garden designers who have never exhibited at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show previously, many of whom are aspiring horticulturalists looking for a ‘foot in the door’.  As an example of best practice, Viking’s feature garden will not be included in the judging process this year to give emerging designers a fair chance to win a medal.

Viking offers a variety of shore excursions on its river, ocean and expedition itineraries that give guests the opportunity to explore historic and award-winning gardens and natural habitats across all seven continents. Guests on Viking’s Atlantic Crossing itinerary can look forward to visiting the magnificent Monte Palace Botanical Garden in Madeira, a 17-acre expanse showcasing exotic plants from around the world.  On Viking’s Portugal’s River of Gold itinerary guests can visit Mateus Palace and its enchanting formal gardens featuring cedar-lined walkways, exquisite sculpted hedges and sculptures, and serene bodies of water.  On select Great Lakes itineraries, which include visits to Cleveland, guests can visit the Cultural Gardens, a collection of city gardens commemorating the many ethnic groups that have settled in Cleveland and have contributed to its development.

To make a booking or for more information about Viking call 0800 458 69 00 or go to www.viking.com