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Photo of a spring show garden

Spring show gardens

Visit the fantastic new 2017 show gardens along The Avenue for great ideas and inspiration to take home. Each week will be revealing the latest fabulous show garden design from the talented teams taking part in this year's spring show. This week we feature a Community Spirit garden called, If you go down to the woods, by Henshaws Arts and Crafts Centre in Knaresborough.

SG4 If you go down to the woods

Designed to capture the vision for a community woodland garden currently being re-developed, this garden hosts a wealth of interest and life.

Meandering stepping stones lead you to a giant spider web and bug hotel, then further along you will find a wildlife pond and Victorian-style fern stumpery. Take a rest on a nearby toadstool while taking in the natural planting and native trees – you may even catch a glimpse of a furtive Mr Fox.

Category: Community Spirit

Size: 5m x 5m

Designer: Henshaws Arts and Crafts Centre

SG8 A little bit of magic 

After their success with the Wallace and Gromit theme last spring, Horticap have decided to sprinkle a little magic on this year’s design.

Inspired by the popular children’s programme ‘The Magic Roundabout’, they have plumped for bright colours and some larger than life characters all hand made by students at the educational centre. There is even a fun challenge to see how many characters you can remember!

Category: Community Spirit

Size: 6m x 4m

Designer: Horticap Ltd

SG3 Colour your garden - a spring tapestry

Vivid spring colours combine with more subtle hues of the season in a garden created to a contemporary grid design.

It is set against a backdrop of cherry trees underplanted with ferns and grasses, with engineered composite decking flanked by clipped evergreen cubes of box and yew, interspersed with lush spring planting in hues of pink, white and spot orange. Hand-patinated stainless steel troughs of jet black water provide contrasting feature pools of light and dark.

Category: Professional

Size: 8m x 6m

Designer: Alistair W Baldwin Associates

SG1 A homecoming prayer 

The biggest show garden ever featured at Harrogate Flower Shows, this is a collaborative effort to create a memorial space for the 6th Regiment Royal Logistics Corps, who recently returned to the UK from Germany.

It is built in a Japanese style, at the request of the Corps, and is intended to be a reflective space providing an oasis of peace in the midst of the hustle and bustle of a busy army barracks.

The circular design and screening create isolation from the garden’s surroundings, while a central, cedar clad prayer house and seating area offer the perfect place for thought and meditation, surrounded by calming scents and the sound of rippling water.

Using traditional methods based on the elements of light, sound and water, the garden features the natural materials of wood and stone. In keeping with Japanese traditions, planting focuses strongly on foliage and structure, with bamboo and grasses to create movement, and the addition of lavender to bring calm and attract wildlife.

After the show, the garden will be relocated to Dishforth Airfield, near Thirsk, where the Corps is currently based. It is hoped that the space will become part of larger memorial project not only to enhance the barracks, but also to kick start wider gardening initiatives, including workshops for military wives and partners.

Category: Professional

Size: 15m diameter

Designer: Northumbrian Landscaping for the 6th Regiment Royal Logistics Corps 


SG2 The Wonders of the Brain

Celebrating the amazing architecture and wonders of the brain, this garden aims to highlight the work of the YBRC in helping to preserve the health and vitality of the brain through research into disorders such as epilepsy, Parkinson's disease, multiple sclerosis and dementia.

Planting is designed to reflect each of the four main brain functions - rosemary and lilac for memory (temporal area); bright flowers and variegated foliage representing the spectrum of colour and pattern in vision (occipital); sensory planting depicting sensation (parietal); and soft grasses with formal structured planting for planning and movement (frontal).

Set against a backdrop of vertical box hedging to map out the centre's logo, key features also include steel water rills connecting to a central cascading sphere to represent the flow of thought and ideas through the brain.

Category: Professional

Size: 8m x 5m

Designer: The Yorkshire Brain Research Centre (YBRC)

SG7 Out of Yorkshire

Demonstrating how a garden can grow from its surrounding landscape, this design uses Yorkstone in three different states to create distinct formal and naturalistic areas of the garden.

The heart of the garden is a seating area enclosed by partially constructed dry stone walling and a formal rill, which runs into a naturalistic pool set within rockery stones.

Planting will be native and naturalised to reflect the Yorkshire landscape in spring, with two large silver birch trees for structure, underplanted with shrubs, ferns and a carpet of native wildflowers and grasses.

Category: Professional

Size: 6m x 5m

Designer: Austin's Gardens

SG5 There’s water under the bridge

Rich in the symbolism of reflection, reform and forgiveness, this garden has been created with a series of feature elements each with its own special message from the ‘Artyculturals’ of HMP Kirklevington Grange.

A drift of alliums represents the many layers of the human mind, while life’s ups and downs are depicted by a special Yin Yang seating area. A den of reflection is created by black bamboo prison bars, softened by climbers, while water cascading into a wishing well represents the time and trouble it can take to right wrongs.

Category: Professional

Size:10m x 8m

Designer: HMP Kirklevington Grange