Alan Titchmarsh rips into Chelsea Flower show for 'shooting itself in the foot' | The Sun

BROADCASTER Alan Titchmarsh rips into The Chelsea Flower show for 'shooting itself in the foot' as the winning garden crowned.

The presenter and gardener hit out at the annual event after the wheelchair accessible Horatio's Garden won the top prize.

Medals are awarded at the The Chelsea Flower Show in each garden category, which include Show Gardens, Sanctuary Gardens, Balcony Gardens as well as Container Gardens.

However Alan, 74, slammed this years show in an article for Country Life as he thinks the gardeners themselves are being pressured into making extra points about environmentalism.

"Having attended this horticultural extravaganza every year since 1969, it has been interesting to watch it evolve and become increasingly high profile.

"The prime aim of the RHS Great Spring Show — to give it its original title — should surely be to celebrate horticultural excellence and allow the growers of all kinds of plants and the designers of all kinds of gardens to demonstrate their skills and to pass them on to future generations.


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"Sometimes, it is obscured by the need to demonstrate that gardeners are not dyed-in-the-wool traditionalists, but vibrant folk with a finger on the current environmental pulse.

The TV star admitted that he is openly worried about the trends being displayed at the show.

He explains: "I do worry about the dangers of pandering to current trends and allowing gardening to become predicated on a kind of laissez-faire attitude to plants that eschews any kind of human interference under the assumption that Nature is best left to herself and any muscling in on our part is to be deplored.

"To allow one garden predicated on no intervention from Man to be considered Best in Show is risky, but should it happen again then a society devoted to and predicated on passing on horticultural skills could legitimately be accused of shooting itself in the foot."

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He added: "Why are we so frightened of promoting gardening?"

But the poet also has hope for the future of the annual nature festival and he wants the event to be all about gardening.

"The judges of the show gardens need to remember that the thousands who attend the show enjoy beautiful plants and gardens they feel they want to be in even more than off-the-wall design ideas that are regarded as ‘cutting edge’.

"Yes; we need refreshing ideas, but at the heart of this show should be a celebration of gardening. I really hope that my 55th Chelsea Flower Show proves that to be the case."

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