Living Laboratory

RHS Chelsea medal winner joins Matt Keightley and Christopher Bradley-Hole to complete the roster of world-class garden design talent transforming RHS Garden Wisley
The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) has commissioned award-winning designer Ann-Marie Powell to design two new gardens around the planned new Centre for Horticultural Science and Learning on the Hilltop at RHS Garden Wisley. The Wildlife Garden and Kitchen Garden will form a ‘living laboratory’ when they open in spring 2020 and play an important part in the enhanced learning experience by illustrating how plants impact our daily lives.
In 2016, Ann-Marie designed the Greening Grey Britain garden for the RHS at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show, but this is the first time she will be working to create permanent spaces at an RHS Garden.
RHS Director General, Sue Biggs, says: “Since its very first days under the care of the RHS, Wisley has been at the forefront of education in horticulture, and Ann-Marie’s designs will provide an easily accessible source of inspiration and learning for all who visit.”
Ann-Marie Powell adds: “As I work with all the teams at Wisley, I’m learning and gaining insight into their vast knowledge and expertise and that is exactly what I hope these gardens will do for generations of visitors to come.”
Part of the RHS’s £160 million investment programme in horticulture, for which £20 million of funding still needs to be raised, the new gardens will help to bring visitors closer than ever to gardening science, by demonstrating beautiful horticulture, best practice and research into the future challenges facing the UK’s 27 million gardeners.
Working closely with the knowledgeable teams at Wisley, Ann-Marie’s garden designs will be filled with take-home inspiration for encouraging a healthy wildlife ecosystem and nurturing a bountiful vegetable patch.
Leading landscape designer Matt Keightley will design the third garden at the site, a Health and Wellbeing Garden, which is also the inspiration for his RHS Feel Good Garden at this year’s RHS Chelsea Flower Show. Ann-Marie Powell’s and Matt Keightley’s Wisley designs form part of Christopher Bradley-Hole’s horticultural masterplan for RHS Garden Wisley.

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