Here are some photos from my visit to the Ellerslie Flower Show last weekend. I'm afraid I haven't in most cases noted the name of the garden or the designer, so I'll just have to give you my humble opinions.
This garden was the People's Choice award winner, with lily pads, lush purple velvet and a firepit in the centre.
This garden was inside one of the marquees. I was very taken with the rustic wooden sleepers, and the 'fireplace' design - cool! I also enjoyed the plant combinations - spiky with fluffy, dark with light, flower with foliage, etc.
This was one of my favourite combos - echinacea with feathery grass and cosmos. The purple and lime green work well together.
This was called El Templo de Bloom, and had an Indiana Jones feel to it. A waterfall, tropical plants and skulls on posts!
Obviously the earthquake was a recurring theme. This rock garden is made from rubble.
And this garden used upside-down road cones as planters.
Other trends I noticed were white gaura - on every second garden it seemed.
Also Japanese maples were all over the place.
Lots of hard landscaping - although that's the case at every garden show I think! This deck had some alternate squares filled with tiny plants, which reminded me of the pothole gardening idea.
I like the herbs and shade lovers tucked under this bench.
And how clever is this birdcage planter! Me wanty.
This is a clever design for a small courtyard. The compost bins are under the decking! The garden also featured vege plants that had flowered and/or gone to seed - it was interesting to see 'past their best' vege plants used in a garden design.
There were lots of sculptures dotted about the place. This grassy meadow was filled with metal poppies and irises.
A metal heron peeks out from grasses.
A monarch butterfly enjoys the show.
On the whole it was a good day out, but I didn't really feel that there were enough flowers in the display gardens. So I was thrilled to look out the window on the way home and spot this cute little cottage and garden. It was like it was put there just for me! I nearly pocketed it to take home, but I contented myself with just taking photos. And if any garden designers are reading this, this is what I want to see at the show next year: white picket fence, weatherboard walls and flowers, flowers, flowers.