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28 October 2014
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The big decision

The Chelsea judges explain their decision behind awarding the Bradstone Garden Best in Show.

RHS judge

The big decision

Choosing the Bradstone Garden as Best in Show over several far more lush and traditionally-planted designs is a brave one by Chelsea judges. However it's one which they stand by wholeheartedly.

“As a garden on Mars, it has to look different,” says Andrew Wilson, one of the judges who made the decision. “But it’s a typical Chelsea garden in terms of the quality of the materials used, the quality of the design, the quality of the planting - it’s all there. So if you take away the wacky angle of it, it is truly a garden that deserves to be Best in Show at Chelsea.”

The Bradstone Garden

While the emphasis on sustainability in an environment with very little water did strike a chord, Andrew says it was the comments on the therapeutic value of gardening that really caught the judges’ imagination.

It’s about the act of gardening, and the thought of perhaps being divorced from Earth in that way, yet still being in touch with it. We thought that came across really well,” he says.

And was it an easy decision to make?

“Very,” says Andrew, with a conviction that leaves no room for doubt that this was a garden which stood head and shoulders above the rest. “I think one difference between judging and actually visiting the show is that one can walk through, sit in the garden, and enjoy the planting at close quarters. And it is relaxing - you would want to spend time there.”

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