The Chelsea Flower Show stands as a horticultural beacon, an annual celebration of botanical beauty, innovation, and craftsmanship. From its modest beginnings in 1862 to its status as a global phenomenon today, the show has evolved into a quintessential event for garden enthusiasts and nature lovers alike. Join us as we delve into the rich history of the Chelsea Flower Show and provide you with a comprehensive guide to navigating this highly anticipated week in London’s annual calendar. 

A brief history

The Chelsea Flower Show was brought to life in 1862 when the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) hosted its first flower show in Kensington, London. Originally known as the ‘Great Spring Show’, it featured displays of exotic plants and flowers from around the world. However, it wasn't until 1913 that the show found its permanent home in the grounds of the Royal Hospital Chelsea, where it continues to be held to this day. Over the years, the Chelsea Flower Show has weathered wars, economic downturns, and societal changes, yet it has always remained a source of hope and inspiration.

From the introduction of show gardens in the 1920s to the unveiling of the avant-garde 'Artisan Gardens' in 2014, the show has continually pushed the boundaries of garden design and innovation. Today, the Chelsea Flower Show attracts visitors from across the globe, including royalty, celebrities, and gardening enthusiasts. It has become not only a showcase for the latest trends in gardening but also a platform for addressing pressing environmental issues such as climate change and biodiversity loss.

Your guide to the Chelsea Flower Show

Getting there: The Chelsea Flower Show is held annually in late May at the Royal Hospital Chelsea, located in the heart of London. Plan your journey in advance, considering public transportation options such as buses, trains, or the London Underground. Alternatively, you can opt for a leisurely stroll through the picturesque streets of Chelsea.

Tickets: Tickets to the Chelsea Flower Show are in high demand, so it's advisable to purchase them well in advance. You can choose from various ticket options, including full-day passes, afternoon tickets, and exclusive VIP packages. Keep in mind that ticket prices vary depending on the day of the week and the time of entry.

Highlights: Upon entering the showground, you'll be greeted by a kaleidoscope of colours, scents, and textures. Be sure to explore the show gardens, where leading designers showcase their creative talents and horticultural expertise. Don't miss the dazzling floral displays in the Great Pavilion, where exhibitors from around the world compete for prestigious awards.

Activities: In addition to admiring the stunning gardens and displays, the Chelsea Flower Show offers a diverse range of activities and attractions. Attend informative talks and demonstrations by gardening experts, browse the artisan stalls for unique plant varieties and garden accessories, or simply relax and enjoy a leisurely picnic on the showground.

Sustainability: As you marvel at the beauty of the Chelsea Flower Show, take a moment to consider the importance of sustainability in gardening practices. Many exhibitors are committed to eco-friendly principles, promoting concepts such as wildlife conservation, organic gardening, and water conservation. Look out for sustainable gardening solutions and take inspiration for your own green space.

Meet Jane Wadham

Jane Wadham, our resident florist, designs exciting seasonal floral displays for us here at The Egerton House Hotel. 

Join us at The Egerton House Hotel for Afternoon Tea

Here at The Egerton House Hotel, a short stroll from The Chelsea Flower Show, we have our Summer Afternoon Tea on offer for you to enjoy in our sun-washed Tea Room. Featuring a mouth-watering Victoria sponge cake and a custard tart with strawberry jam and elderflower infusion, these summertime Afternoon Tea classics are hard to resist.

The Chelsea Flower Show is more than just a garden show, it's a celebration of nature's beauty, resilience, and diversity. Whether you're a seasoned gardener or simply appreciate the wonders of the natural world, the show offers something for everyone. So, mark your calendars, book your tickets, and prepare to be inspired by the enchanting world of horticulture at the Chelsea Flower Show.