RHS Chatsworth Flower Show Gold Medal
The ‘Healing Power of Scent’ long border highlights the importance of scent in emotional well-being. Smell directly influences our emotional responses, memories and physiology, driving our behaviour at an instinctive and subconscious level. Inhalation of plant extracts is known to have a positive effect on brain activity. Rose oil vapour in particular is thought to have anti-depressive, calming and uplifting properties, helping to reduce fatigue, stress and exhaustion.
Central to this border is the iconic rose. A strongly scented variety is planted in a pattern resembling a brain-wave. An abstract metal brain-wave sculpture symbolises the direct affect of scent on our brains and subsequently how we feel. Supporting the rose are plants that stimulate other senses such as touch (foliage texture, especially grasses), sight (colour and aesthetics) and sound (rustling foliage and pollinators attracted to the flowers). These stimuli work together to create a positive interaction with plants and nature.
The Rose is just one of many scented plants that can be incorporated into our gardens. In addition to the enjoyment such fragrance brings is the potential to harness the power of smell to improve our emotional well-being.
For more information about the effect of scent on emotional well-being and for the plant list and for tips on including scent in your garden, please see my blog posts:
Creating and executing a show garden is a huge team effort, without which I (Rachel Bailey, designer) could not have pulled this off. So a huge thank you to the following people:
The onsite team:
Nicola Sweeney - planting
Nigel Bailey - onsite help
Pip Probert - onsite help and planting
Steph Hancock - onsite help
Plants were expertly nurtured and supplied by:
Created from the paper design by Rachel Bailey into the fantastic brushed stainless steel 'brainwaves' by Chris Barrowman of Fluxworx
Thank you also to the RHS Chatsworth Show team who without none of this would have happened.
Thank you to Trellis, Scotland's network of therapeutic gardens, who supported our endeavours.
And of course, thank you to my family who supported me unwaveringly: David Bailey, Freya Bailey, Judith Bailey and Kay Toole.