Water Preservation is a Hot Topic at RHS Chelsea Flower Show

Water Preservation is a Hot Topic at RHS Chelsea Flower Show

The RHS Chelsea Flower Show has been one of the most prestigious flower shows in the world since its inception in 1912. Known for inventive displays and outrageous exhibitions, the show is at the forefront of showcasing fashion, beauty and pushing boundaries in the gardening world. 2019 was no different.

Given how this show is known for having the latest styles and trends, it was perhaps unsurprising that with the recent attention in the media focused on the environment, some of the themes centred around water preservation, sustainability and finding eco-friendly ways of living. Many of the displays were either made from eco-friendly resources, revealed inventions to help green programs across the world or were trying to raise awareness.

Floella’s Future

Birmingham City Council’s garden named ‘Floella’s Future’ was designed in honour of Baroness Floella Benjamin OBE and touched upon five subjects; waste reduction, community, sustainability, clean air and water conservation. It was punctuated by a sculpture of a human head made of tubes and shown drinking from a plastic straw. A clear take on one of the biggest issues surrounding the environment now. The display also included an electric truck from the fifties, showing us how long the technology has been in use for, and a greenhouse made from recycled plastic bottles.

This display won a Gold Medal (the eighth for Birmingham City Council) and was sponsored by Veolia, a company that specialises in water and waste management. The exhibit championed Birmingham’s canal network whilst shining a light on to the waste that is picked up on it. The importance of preserving our canals, rivers and water supplies was highlighted throughout the arrangement.

floella yourgreenaction

(picture: @yourgreenaction)


Most displays such as the Resilience Garden either outlined ways of living more sustainably or featured eco-friendly ways of gardening. Much of the media narrative is centred around our planet and how to be kinder to it and there is no better place to start than the garden! By allowing wild flowers to grow and not trimming back as much as we have done before, we can encourage bugs and bees to pollinate more freely. Displays from Savills and the Montessori Centre International focused on letting the wild roam free and displayed clean air plants and trees that convert polluted air into breathable oxygen. Gardens such as these will be popping up in places such as London as part of government initiatives to provide better quality air for people growing up in the hustle and bustle of a city.


(picture: @hortusrocks)

Water Features

Many of this year’s exhibitors entwined water features such as small ponds and water walls into their grand designs. By mixing water on a large scale with the wild greenery, you can create a mini ecosystem in your back garden, as illustrated by Savills. Allowing plants to live, breathe and die in your space means the need for planting new flowers almost stops and insects pollinate close by. Plants in this display thrived from the natural landscape and hung over the pond, being the first to drink from it.


(picture: @anneashworth)

Having a pond also means you can create a habitat for creatures such as frogs, dragonflies and drinking water for animals that may wander through. Creating a landscape such as this needn’t be difficult and if you are more eco-aware, you may already be looking into sustainable ways for landscaping your garden.

Easy ways to get started

Get harvesting! The easiest way to make sure you aren’t wasting this precious resource is to catch your own water. Rain falls rather a lot in the UK and Ireland, especially if you live in some areas of Scotland, so hold on to it! Creating a small pond will be even easier if you fill it up with harvested rainwater as this water is untreated and will be more attractive to insects and plants.

Composting is the perfect way to feed your plants and garden. Also, it a far more sustainable way of living and saves money from buying compost in.

We have some beautiful ‘weeds’ in the UK and Ireland, allowing some to flourish for the sake of bees could bring your garden to life. Plants such as nettles and Dandelions can look stunning when allowed to bloom fully and some can make fantastic companion plants for any fruit and veg you wish to grow. Why not allow growth around your water features to create tranquil spots in your garden?

Water sustainability goes hand in hand with eco-living and green alternatives and as people talk about it more, fashion will become more aware. This was seen at this years Chelsea Flower Show and was championed by certain exhibitors.

Try your hand at being sustainable with your water at Water Butts Direct