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RHS Chelsea 2019: Snow’s Trailfinders Garden

RHS Chelsea 2019: Snow’s Trailfinders Garden


Jonathan Snow is back with a lush, Chilean-inspired show garden


Following his debut last year with the Trailfinders South African Wine Estate Garden, Pre-Registered SGD Member Jonathan Snow is returning with another Main Avenue show garden for the travel company, which he hopes will trump his 2018 Silver Gilt medal.

Designed to transport visitors several thousand miles west around the globe, The Trailfinders Undiscovered Latin America Garden presents an image of the temperate rainforests of Chile. Snow says he is showcasing the flora of South America because it includes a surprising number of well-known UK garden plants, which makes his design more accessible.

His verdant garden is set on a steep slope covered in lush planting, with waterfalls cascading into a pool, and a striking red walkway that winds its way through the space, and appears to float over the vegetation. The waterfalls are being built from sandstone quarried in Bolton, which resembles the dark volcanic rock in Chile, while ferns, Calceolaria and gunneras fill the gaps between the stones, reflecting the lush South American landscape.

The planting focuses on texture and includes Araucaria araucana, Nothofagus antarctica and Gunnera manicata, with splashes of colour from Fuchsia magellanica and Alstroemeria species. While some plants, such as the fuchsia, may not be fashionable, Snow is hoping that his use of this and other common plants, such as berberis and escallonias, will help boost their popularity.

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