London flower route

Chelsea in Bloom
Photo: Chelsea in Bloom

One thing we’re excited for as a tinge of warmth enters the air is our annual favourite floral affair, Chelsea in Bloom. Running alongside the RHS Chelsea Flower Show, this free annual festival is produced by Cadogan in association with the Royal Horticultural Society (the RHS), and sees the squares, streets and facades of Chelsea transformed with beautiful flower displays. 

Chelsea in Bloom’s 

The walking tours are back! Head to the Greengrocers Information Point on Sloane Square to reserve your place on one of walking tours throughout the week –the ultimate way to enjoy this year’s event. Walking tours depart at 11am and 3pm (exclusions apply on Monday, 20May). 

As ever, the streets and squares and more than 120 businesses of SW10 will be transformed with wonderful floral displays created by retailers in the borough, and you can even vote for your favourites from 5 pm on Monday May 20. 

Photo: Chelsea in Bloom

The Chelsea Flower Show 2024

The RHS (Royal Horticultural Society) Chelsea Flower Show is a five-day-long annual spectacular of flowers, plants and show gardens, hosted in the grounds of the Royal Hospital Chelsea.

For visitors, it’s one of the places to see cutting-edge garden design, discover new plants and trends, and take home a wheelbarrow of flowers/tools/inspiration. For exhibitors, it’s the chance to show off their concepts/green fingers, and maybe scoop a coveted award or two.

Chelsea is best known for its display of pocket gardens. This year that includes a selection of show gardens, plus a smattering of balcony gardens, sanctuary gardens and others. 

Here are some themes to look out for:

Water: As we continue to see climate change take effect, it’s no surprise to see a Flood Resilient Garden on show this year, featuring an elevated deck, and channels that lead rainwater into a feature pond. The Ecotherapy Garden, meanwhile, features a series of step-down pools fed by antique water spouts and, elsewhere, you’ll find a Water Saving Garden and a WaterAid garden with a fetching rainwater harvesting pavilion.

Health: Gardens are good for mental health, and physical wellbeing too. The Bowel Research UK Microbiome Garden inspires people to ‘rewild’ their diets and appreciate the links between the healthy soil and healthy humans. Muscular Dystrophy UK’s Forest Bathing Garden provides a soothing sanctuary, inspired by the Japanese practice of Shinrin-yoku. After going on show at Chelsea, it’ll be relocated to the  Institute of Developmental and Regenerative Medicine in Oxford. Look out, too, for the vibrant National Autistic Society Garden.

Architectural: Many of the gardens feature built components, which will appeal to the architecturally-minded; among them, St James’s Piccadilly: Imagine the World to be Different — a pocket park with walls constructed using rammed earth (this will be relocated to central London); the Freedom from Torture Garden, with its sculptural streams of willow, and the Sanctum, with its charred wood pod in the centre.

Photo: Chelsea in Bloom


Chelsea Flower Show historical roots run deep. Before moving to Chelsea in 1912, the show was initially called ‘The Great Spring Show’, and was first held in Kensington in 1862. Before THAT, it was hosted from 1833 in the RHS’s garden in Chiswick. Between 1888 and 1912, it was the Temple Flower Show, located in Temple Gardens, off Fleet Street.

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