Japanese Pergola

Chelsea Flower Show, London

Architects: Ian Taylor
Contractor: Westwind Oak
Highlights: Silver medal show garden at Chelsea Flower Show, HTV programme about the making of the Zen Garden

Photographer: Clive Nicholls

Award-winning garden designer, Ian Taylor, was asked to step in at the last minute to design and build a show garden at the World’s most prestigious flower show, RHS Chelsea. Ian had just 10 weeks to create a garden, something that would normally take a couple of years.

We heard about Ian’s Japanese inspired Zen Garden during his urgent appeal for help on a local radio station. With no time for sponsorship and no budget available we agreed to build a Japanese Pergola for free in the hope that it would sell after the show, which it did. We soon found ourselves in the hectic environment of Chelsea Flower Show with hundreds of contractors racing to finish the gardens in time for the Show’s opening. 

Our Japanese Pergola was the centrepiece of the Zen Garden and made a focal point for the tea rituals which were performed by Rupert’s Japanese sister-in-law. The Queen visited on the day of the judging and we were pleased that Ian’s Zen Garden, with a little help from our Pergola, was awarded a Silver Guilt Medal. HTV made a half-hour film about the making of the Zen Garden and even came to the Westwind Oak workshop to film us making the pergola. 

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