On Monday evening, The Duchess of Cambridge was a bit nervous and quite excited. Her hard work of many months – her garden ‘Back to Nature‘ was on display at one of the most prominent events of the British Royal calendar – the RHS Chelsea Flower Show.
Delighted Duchess backed by her husband Prince William, proudly introduced her garden to the Queen and the members of the Royal family. It was announced in January this year that Duchess has been co-designing a garden named ‘Back to Nature’ that will be displayed at the Chelsea Flower Show.
It was not just the Duchess who was overjoyed. We all the royal watchers were given equally happy treats one after another. Palace shared the Duchess’ private visits to the garden to finalize the details last week. Then on Saturday, we got beautiful pictures of the whole Cambridge clan enjoying the time in Duchess’ garden. Then on Monday morning before the final reveal, Duchess again visited the garden with school children.
Giving all of us a beautiful gift, Palace shared a video of Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis having time of their life at Mummy’s garden. George even gave his Mummy 20 out of 10 for the beautiful garden.
Inspired by both Cambridge residences – Kensington Palace and Anmer Hall, as well as the Duchess’ Childhood and her kid’s life, this woodland garden is a place to retreat from the world, to play, learn and discover as well as create special family memories.
About the garden, the RHS said, “The treehouse, the centrepiece of the garden, is constructed from a beautiful tree with a high platform clad in staghorn oak. A swing seat hangs from the branches, creating a place for children and families to play together. A waterfall and stream offer places to paddle, relax and build dams, while a hollow log presents a challenge of learning to balance as well as to climb“.
There is a pebble-lined stream that runs through the garden. The garden is filled with incredible edibles, plants for craft activities, forest scents and a diverse range of plants, shrubs and trees of different heights and textures.
Wild trees and shrubs and a cool calm colour palette of green and blue make this garden a relaxing and calming space, while the planting includes edible produce, plants for craft activities, food for wildlife and nectar to attract pollinators. A playful pathway bordered with beautiful foliage textures weaves through the garden, around the rocks and stepping stones.
The Duchess, who usually stays private, gave a candid interview in which she said,
“It really ties into some of the early years work I’ve been doing, and I’ve been really trying to learn about the impact, the importance and relationship of our early childhood experiences on our later adult life. An amazing fact I learned recently was that 90% of our adult brains are developed before that age of five. That’s why I think it’s so important that all of us whether we’re parents or carers or families members really engage in quality time with children and babies from a really, really young age. I really hope this woodland we’ve created, in a huge collaboration, really inspires families and kids and communities in general to get outside. Enjoy nature. Enjoy the outdoors and really spend quality time together”.
About her work and garden, Duchess also wrote a letter to the experts,
“In recent years I have focused much of my work on the early years, and how instrumental they are for outcomes later in life. I believe that spending time outdoors when we are young can play a role in laying the foundations for children to become happy, healthy adults. There are undoubtedly challenges in trying to bring about the transformation that will make positive change for generations to come, and help break the inter-generational cycle of disadvantage and trauma, yet I am inspired every day by the people I meet and am committed to supporting this endeavour. I hope my long-term commitment to working in the early years will help make a difference over a generational timescale”.
The RHS Back to Nature Garden is key to the RHS’s partnership with NHS England, promoting the physical and emotional wellbeing that access to green spaces and gardening provides. After RHS Chelsea Flower Show, much of the planting and some of the landscaping will go to an NHS Mental Health Trust, as part of a national competition run by the RHS.
Duchess was pretty nervous before the arrival of Her Majesty. Royal reporter Emily Andrews tweeted on twitter, “Before Her Majesty arrived, Kate quickly swept the garden for stray leaves and stuffed a dead branch into her handbag (& gave it to an aide) as there wasn’t a bin!
Kate’s last-minute sweep of her garden paid off. “It’s very tidy,” remarked the Queen as she walked past the perimeter. Her Majesty chuckled when William showed her the Reed boats Kate and the schoolkids have made earlier. Kate was endearingly nervous at first and William held back as she led“.
The Duchess’ garden has some special childhood memories of Queen too. She included in her garden carrots and beetroot which Queen remembers planting as a girl.
The Duchess of Cambridge introduced the team behind her garden to the Queen.
First time held in 1913, The RHS Chelsea Flower show is one of the most prominent events of Royal calendar as its one of Queen’s patronage. Duchess first attended Chelsea Flower Show in 2015.
It was not just Queen who enjoyed The Duchess’ garden. Countess of Wessex Sophie was a sport too and visited the treehouse.
A video of the day.
Coming to the sartorial details, Catherine was looking lovely in Erdem Shebah Dress. Thanks to Danielle Stacey for the id.
Crafted from white cotton-silk voile the multicoloured floral print dress has Princess Diana’s favourite forget-me-nots flower print in it. The dress was described as, ” Showcasing the Victorian influence on the British label, this high-neck style is accented with white crocheted lace and raw-edge ruffled trim. High neck. Three-quarter-length sleeves”.
The Duchess of Cambridge paired the dress with her Castaner Carina Wedges that we saw last week when she took kids to the garden.
Her Cassandra Goad Cavolfiore Pearl Studs that she first wore at the christening of Prince Louis in July 2018
and Cartier Ballon Bleu watch finished her look.
The Duchess of Cambridge’s endeavour with gardens will continue. She will co-design two further RHS Gardens, having many of elements from her ‘Back to Nature’ garden at Chelsea, at RHS Hampton Court Palace Garden Festival that will be held from July 2 to July 7 and RHS Garden Wisley in Surrey, which will open in the autumn this year.