Clematis at Chelsea

After yesterday’s greyness, and the colder weather forecast for today I thought i could do with a blast of colour. And where better to pop into, than Chelsea? With a nod to the weather we have at the moment I’ve popped into the Pavilion, which is just huge. I’m sure I read somewhere it’s the size of three football pitches, which gives you an idea of just how big it is.

I tried - and failed - to walk around it all, but it’s size and the magpie-like behaviour it encourages - ooh, look at that over there! - meant that my methodical plan to cover as much as I could went out of the window, or perhaps tent flap, quicker than you could say clematis. And it’s clematis that have the colour I’m after.

All of these photos are from the Raymond Evison display, and they’re wonderful. The display too is imaginative, with a beach theme and waves of colour and scent. But before you scroll down to see more, I also discovered some handy guides on the nursery’s site, for beginners and experts, and with advice for simple pruning through to archways and trees and walls.

I guess it makes sense for nursery’s to provide advice, after all they are the experts on their plants - the photos below are proof of that, but I’ve never thought to consult a specialist grower for growing or pruning advice before. But now I will, and I think it’s well worth remembering.

waves and waves of clematis in the pavilion at RHS Chelsea

I told you there was waves didn’t I?

But there was also a seashore on the other side of the boardwalk, complete with lobster pots, sand and some artfully arrange pebbles. And more clematis, of course.

The beach theme continued throughout the display

And true to life, there were even some pebbles at the bottom of the sea.

A closer look at one of the waves

On the stand there was every type of clematis you could imagine. The more usual (I think) open flowers, the one I have in my garden is similar to this but a dark maroon which makes its yellow centre (yeap, the technical approach again) stand out. Somehow the petals look even more velvety in the darker varieties.

A white clematis on the Raymond Evison stand
Being restrained by the rope on the boardwalk

Had you asked me what the flowers above were, I’m not sure my first thoughts would have been clematis. But I know they are, or otherwise they wouldn’t have been in this display, but aren’t they different. They were just as vibrant as they look here, and I remember it amused me at the time that they were being restrained by that rope. These must be the rowdy clematis…

many colours of clematis

The ones above hardly look real do they? But I can assure you they were - it’s the pink ones I think that have an almost hand drawn quality. And I’ve realised I’m a fan of this colour combination, what about you?