The British Association of Landscape Industries (BALI) and the Royal Horticultural Society’s (RHS) ‘Best of Both Worlds’ show garden, built by a team of 23 students, has been awarded a prestigious Gold medal at RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show 2018.
Judges were left suitably impressed by the garden, designed by BALI Registered Designer Rosemary Coldstream MBALI MSGD of Rosemary Coldstream Garden Design, which has been divided into two halves, one traditional and one contemporary, demonstrating different skills, materials and techniques and including a variety of both hard and soft landscaping elements.
The garden, which measures over 100sqm, features a large variety of plants including types of agapanthus, buxus sempervirens, pachysandra, astrantia, geranium, lavandula, salvia and thalictrum. The garden also displays a row of pleached Carpinus , a Cretan terracotta water feature and a sunken cedar bench surrounding a luxury granite paved fire pit.
The garden was jointly sponsored by BALI and the RHS to promote GoLandscape, a national industry careers initiative launched by BALI earlier this year following a successful pilot phase. BALI’s Education Officer Stephen Ensell, who has led the project, commented ‘By involving students and apprentices in the construction of the garden, including laying paving and planting over 1,000 species, we are providing them with a platform from which to demonstrate their skills in front of the wider landscape industry. I can think of no better way of promoting the opportunities available in our industry than by showcasing a garden of this size to the thousands of visitors expected over the next few days.’
BALI’s Chief Executive Wayne Grills said: ‘BALI continues to receive a tremendous amount of support for GoLandscape, which was designed to promote landscaping as a viable and rewarding career option for students choosing their future career path. It was also set up to help students and apprentices already studying horticulture, from entry level through to degree level, to find employment within the industry, and to combat the current skills gap crisis faced by our industry.’
He continued: ‘By working with industry partners, including the RHS, BALI and its GoLandscape Ambassadors are working tirelessly to help promote and showcase the skills and talents of our students and apprentices, to really help get the message across that high quality landscaping is essential for improving our environment, health and wellbeing and for providing a sustainable future for all.’
On Monday 2 July, BALI presented two awards to two students, following a vote from mentors, to reward the top hard landscaping student and top soft landscaping student for their skill and professionalism. The prize package included a Swiss made pruning shear worth over £100, courtesy of Felco, and a certificate.
The winners, Jamie Anderson of Southern Land Services and Natalie Fairs from Capel Manor College, were presented with the prizes on the garden in front of media representatives and journalists during RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show’s official press day.
BALI and the RHS would like to personally congratulate all of the students who helped build the GoLandscape show garden and say a huge ‘thank you’ to the mentors who oversaw the design and build of the project, including BALI’s Education Officer Stephen Ensell, BALI Registered Designer Rosemary Coldstream MBALI MSGD, David Dodd and Mark Britton of BALI Registered Contractor The Outdoor Room, Jake Catling of BALI Registered Contractor The Landscaping Consultants, and Anna Butterfield.