RHS Hampton Court Palace 2019 was packed with gorgeous gardens, inspiring workshops, irresistible food and much more.
The Floral Marquee was bursting with colourful blooms, and the Plant Village, Country Living Pavilion and plentiful tradestands offered an exciting array of shopping opportunities.
With top experts and designers having descended on the show, let's look back at the garden festival of 2019.
A garden co-designed by The Duchess
Fresh from her debut at this year's Chelsea Flower Show, HRH The Duchess of Cambridge once again teamed up with award-winning landscape architects, Andrée Davies and Adam White to co-design a garden for the festival.
The RHS Back to Nature Garden was a reimagined version of the Chelsea garden and inspired families to enjoy the great outdoors. After the festival, the garden is being relocated to RHS Garden Wisley.
Dancing through dahlias
Visitors walked in the fragrant, dappled shade of lime trees at the new Ditton Avenue festival entrance and enjoyed vivid pink swathes of 4,000 Dahlia ‘Mendoza’. The stunning flowers of this Dalina Maxi Series were the perfect start to the RHS Hampton Court Palace Garden Festival and hinted at the horticultural delights to come.
Guests were wowed by the displays in our enormous Floral Marquee. It was the ultimate place to buy plants and quiz experts on caring for blooms. Plus, there was the opportunity to find a new addition to bring some summer colour to the garden in our extensive Plant Village.
This year's Master Grower, Downderry Nursery, had a huge display of lavender in the Floral Marquee. Visitors inhaled the gorgeous scent of these dreamy plants and learned how the nursery came to be one of the country's most successful lavender growers.
Walk through the gardens
A garden festival wouldn’t be complete without a whole host of gardens – and we had them in abundance. With four garden categories in 2019, there were ideas aplenty, offering inspiration to fill the tiniest pot, windowbox or border, up to larger spaces for entertaining, relaxing and everything in between.
There was also plenty of opportunity to see the Show Gardens up close. A whole range of designs, including the Viking Cruises Lagom Garden and the Thames Water Flourishing Future Garden, were walk-through, meaning visitors could enjoy the gardens from every angle.
The power of community
The community zone was buzzing with exciting activities and things to see. The community allotments showcased what can be achieved when people join together to garden and enjoy new experiences, often using recyclable materials. Hackney City Farm, Fernleigh Day Centre, Shedx and The Husbandry School all provided inspirational spaces for visitors to explore.
An extensive group of schools in Greater London and the Home Counties created bug hotels in our It's a Wild World display. There were hotels of all types and sizes to attract wildlife, from hedgehogs to pollinators, creatively inspiring other schools to get bug hotel building.
Pond and wildlife expert Jules Howard encouraged everyone to look beneath the surface of our ponds with some pond dipping.
Learn how to create your own pond at home or at school as part of our RHS Wild About Gardens campaign and make a difference to all sorts of watery wildlife species.
Posing by the RHS Letters
The glorious flowers in our RHS letters were arranged by internationally-acclaimed florist Jonathan Moseley. Dazzling summer blooms in purple, pink and peach tones with complementary foliage showed Jonathan’s work to perfection. Visitors enjoyed this opportunity to stop for a spectacular selfie.
Seeing roses at their best
The Festival of Roses was back for another year and was bursting with beautiful blooms. Visitors inhaled the scent of the 2020 Rose of the Year, marvelled at our experts' displays and quizzed them on their tips for rose care.
New for 2019 was our Rose Garden Tearoom, which overlooked our stunning rose garden designed by Jo Thompson. It was the place to enjoy a cup of tea, indulge in a slice of cake and plan the rest of the day at the festival.
Adding some sparkle to the day
In Your Dreams, a beauty brand born on the UK festival scene, joined us at Hampton Court Palace this year.
The team offered pressed flower makeovers for the entire week with a menu of looks that featured dried pressed flowers, glitter, jewels, sequins, gold and silver leaf and intricate paint designs to suit any style.
Celebrating the legacy of Beth Chatto
The festival payed homage to legendary plantswoman Beth Chatto who sadly passed away in 2018. Beth was named as Horticultural Hero of the RHS Hampton Court Palace Garden Festival 2019.
It was the second year that the show celebrated a legend from the gardening world, with Piet Oudolf being named as the first Horticultural Hero in 2018.
Beth’s long and successful career was celebrated with a gravel garden that took inspiration from the Beth Chatto gardens. The Beth Chatto team used drought-tolerant plants in a nod to our ever-changing and unpredictable climate.
Listening to live music
Visitors took a break from the hustle and bustle of the show and enjoyed a picnic in front of our floating stage. This feature was brand new for 2019 and will featured a lively schedule of music and entertainment all day long.
There were performances from the likes of Soul Brothers, Brass Funkies and the Westend Musical Choir.
Enjoying the show with family
There was an exciting array of family activities to get the whole clan involved at the festival. Visitors explored ponds in our interactive pond dipping experience, got glammed up with glitter face painting and made a flower crown.
There were a host of free activities running throughout the show.
Visitors indulged in a bit of retail therapy at the festival, with a whole range of tradestands at the show, selling everything from jewellery and clothing, to greenhouses and garden tools.
There was whole world of shopping across the showground, including the Plant Village and the Country Living Pavilion.