This year’s Gardener’s World Live event at the NEC in Birmingham was bigger and brighter than ever with thousands of budding garden enthusiasts making their way around the incredible display of living garden displays and stands! At the Garden Furniture Centre, we had the pleasure of donating our Romance Teak Bench to Lilidh Matthews and John Tallis’s ‘Escaping Seasons of the Mind’ garden design in support of the charity Perennial.
Primarily designed to be a space of reflection, the garden represents the escapism of the mind and home as well as symbolising the different states of human emotions depicted throughout the changing seasons. The inspiration for the creation of this garden resonated around two important facts:
- 90% of our lives are spent indoors.
- Most suicides happen during the Autumn season.
As you look from above, the centre of the garden is designed to emulate the shape of a clock or compass to represent the passing of time throughout the year. There are eleven Corten steel posts that slowly decline in height as you move around the garden to highlight how our mindset changes once winter is over and spring begins. This is also demonstrated through the fragmentation of the sandstone paving where it is noticeably divided in the autumn section, but conjoin together as you progress into the spring. Our Romance Teak Bench is then placed at the 12th point which demonstrates that summer has begun.
As you move around the garden, you can see the transitional stages of the year with the beautiful display of plants and colours corresponding to the four seasons. In the top left corner, the garden starts with the autumn season as it significantly links back to the statistic that most suicides happen during this time of year. This is also the highest point of the wall and Corten steel post as well as the planning heavily focusing on reds and oranges to depict the autumnal season and emotions of anger.
When transitioning to winter, you can see that the planting starts to emulate more blue tones and spikey plants to show how gardens are neglected during this time due to the cold weather. However, at this point, you see the Corten steel posts start to decline in height as the hope of spring becomes more prominent.
Once you progress into spring, this becomes the lowest point of the outer wall and the ending of the Corten steel posts. The inclusion of bright colours and spring planting depicts how this time of year is the hope for a new beginning and excitement for the summer season.
The last section of the garden depicts the summer season where our magnificent Romance Teak Bench takes pride of place! The bench overlooks the autumn and winter sections and acts as a way of reflection on the year that has passed. It also encourages the onlooker to spend more time taking care of their mental health and to make the effort to go outdoors.
How We Got Involved
At the last minute, we received a call from the designers as the bench they had previously chosen unfortunately did not work with the overall concept. Through an extensive search on our website, John managed to find our beautiful Romance Teak Bench which he instantly felt was the perfect final touch to complete the garden. The curvature of the bench and its simple yet elegant design was the missing ingredient to finish the garden and we were more than happy to help!
In the space of a few days, the bench made its way to the venue and was carefully placed in the designated spot to represent the summer segment of the garden design. The bench and garden have been a huge hit with the public as well as famous faces such as Alan Titchmarsh and Adam Frost! The garden has been a great success and we are extremely honoured to be part of such an inspiring and influential project.
Come and visit our other range of benches in our showroom in Wootton Wawen at Yew Tree Farm as well as so much more!
Escaping Seasons of the Mind
Lilidh Matthews - https://www.findingroots.co.uk
John Tallis - https://www.outdoorlivinggardens.co.uk