The Landscape Service and Furzey Gardens scoop top Awards at the BBC Gardeners’ World Spring Fair at Beaulieu

BBC TV gardening presenter, Frances Tophill, has presented awards to design teams and horticulture students behind some show-stopping gardens and displays at the BBC Gardeners’ World Spring Fair at Beaulieu.

Winner of the Spring Fair’s Best Showcase Garden and a Platinum Award was Nordic Retreat by The Landscape Service, based in Southampton. Designed by Luke Mills, the stylish, minimalist garden is designed to offer a calming space to relax, unwind and rejuvenate, providing temporary respite from the urban environment. It features neutral colours, planting features to create dappled shade, and natural hard landscaping materials.

Assessors were multi award-winning garden designers and horticultural experts, Robin Templar Williams, Lucy Bravington and Professor David Stevens.

Chair of assessors, Robin Templar Williams, said: “The Landscape Service have designed the perfect Nordic retreat, with a hue of greens and Pine as one of its principal species. With less than three days to build a fully functioning garden, we were impressed with the authenticity and quality of the garden which included a space for yoga on the deck.”

Winner Luke Mills, Director of The Landscape Service, said: “The Nordic Retreat is our first show garden so I couldn’t be happier to have won this award. Inspired by my Nordic heritage, I wanted the garden to have a therapeutic effect, providing calm and respite from busy life. It’s been a real team effort by gardeners, landscapers, suppliers and sponsors, and I’m over the moon.”

Best Beautiful Border and Platinum Award winner was ‘Not all those who wander are lost’ by Furzey Gardens and Minstead Trust who provide training and work experience for people with learning disabilities. The Border was inspired by a poem from J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Fellowship of the Ring, and features plants grown at Furzey Gardens, a stepping stone path, and a grand chair carved from the trunk of an old Elm tree.

The Beautiful Borders competition is a highlight at all BBC Gardeners’ World Events and is designed to provide achievable inspiration for smaller gardens and tricky spaces. Entrants take on the challenge of packing compact 9m2 plots with imaginative planting and creative design features. This year’s theme is ‘My Garden Escape’. Spring Fair award assessors for the Beautiful Borders were Ian Hodgson, editor of Garden News, and acclaimed Hampshire garden designers, Anita Foy from Anita Foy Garden Design, and Richard Barnard from Kings Oak Landscapes.

Andrew Bentley, Estates Manager at Minstead Trust, said: “We are delighted for all the people that we support that have worked so hard to create this garden. It has created a real sense of purpose and shows what people with learning disabilities can achieve when they have support and encouragement.

Reviewing all Award entries at the Spring Fair, BBC TV gardening presenter Frances Tophill, said: “I’m hugely impressed with the talent involved and the hard work that has gone into creating these wonderful gardens and displays, with every award richly deserved.”

Lord Montagu of Beaulieu, said: “Whilst Beaulieu is best known as the home of the National Motor Museum, I am always keen that visitors enjoy everything the attraction has to offer, including the gardens. It follows that I am more than delighted to be hosting the BBC Gardeners’ World Spring Fair at Beaulieu, an event which is growing by the year, as every good plant should!”