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Smart Meter Garden

Three-time RHS gold medal winning designer, Matthew Childs, will be hoping for his fourth award with his Smart Meter Garden at this year’s RHS Hampton Court Garden Festival.

Smart Meter Garden RHS Hampton Court Flower Show 2019 by garden designer Matthew Childs

Inspired by a quote from Bengali philosopher Rabindranath Tagore, it calls on visitors to consider the seeds they are planting for our grandchildren’s futures.“The one who plants trees, knowing that he will never sit in their shade, has at least started to understand the meaning of life.”

Smart Meter Garden RHS Hampton Court Flower Show 2019 by garden designer Matthew Childs

The Smart Meter Garden is sponsored by Smart Energy GB, the Campaign for a Smarter Britain and aims to challenge and inspire visitors to recognise the role they have in tackling climate change.

Smart Meter Garden RHS Hampton Court Flower Show 2019 by garden designer Matthew Childs

A path winds through tall, shade-giving trees towards a cracked, black surface, emitting flashes of light and mist – in total contrast with the peace and tranquillity of the tree-lined path. Water fills the space, reflecting the green canopy and the visitors around the edge - and providing a glimpse into the beautiful world we can create together.

Planting:

Smart Meter Garden RHS Hampton Court Flower Show 2019 by garden designer Matthew Childs

Trees are the key element of the planting in the Smart Meter Garden. Referencing the important role that they can have on reducing CO2 in the atmosphere, they are a metaphor for the positive impact smart meters can have on the environment. A range of Betula (birch) cultivars demonstrate a diversity of interesting characteristics and are set off by a rich underplanting of foliage provided by shrubs, perennials, ferns, hostas and large abstract mounds of grasses. 

Plant list:

Trees

Betula pendula
Betula utilis var. jacquemontii 'Doorenbos'
Betula ermanii 'Grayswood Hill'
Betula nigra
Betula albosinensis 'Fascination'
Betula utilis var. jacquemontii
Betula nigra 'Cully'

 

Shrubs

Sarcococca confusa
Nandina domestica
Aralia elata 'Variegata'
Cornus kousa var. chinensis
Hydrangea arborescens 'Incrediball'
Cornus kousa 'Cappuccino'
Osmanthus heterophyllus
Hydrangea aspera 'Hot Chocolate'
Calycanthus floridus 'Aphrodite'
Hydrangea arborescens 'Ruby Annabelle'
Hydrangea heteromalla Bretschneideri Group 'Bougie'


Perennials

Digitalis ferruginea
Euphorbia amygdaloides var. robbiae
Helleborus foetidus
Alchemilla erythropoda
Rodgersia podophylla
Geranium sanguineum 'Album'
Asarum europaeum
Cenolophium denudatum
Liriope muscari 'Royal Purple'
Euphorbia x martini 'Ascot Rainbow'
Gunnera magellanica
Alchemilla epipsila
Visnaga daucoides
Liriope spicata 'Gin-ryu'

 

Grasses

Calamagrostis x acutiflora 'Overdam'
Luzula sylvatica
Carex oshimensis 'Eversheen'

 

Ferns

Asplenium scolopendrium
Athyrium filix-femina
Asplenium trichomanes
Osmunda regalis
Polystichum setiferum
Blechnum spicant
Polystichum polyblepharum
Matteuccia struthiopteris
Cyrtomium fortunei
Dryopteris affinis 'Cristata'
Polystichum braunii
Arachniodes simplicior
Blechnum penna-marina
Dryopteris lepidopoda
Dryopteris erythrosora 'Brilliance'

Hostas

Hosta 'Sum and Substance'
Hosta fortunei var. aureomarginata
Hosta 'June'
Hosta 'Blue Cadet'
Hosta 'Krossa Regal'
Hosta 'Devon Green'
Hosta 'Blue Mouse Ears'
Hosta 'Great Expectations'
Hosta 'Red October'