Get elemental at Kew Gardens

Kew Gardens is celebrating the power of flowers with their Tropical Extravaganza until 4 March.

Curated floral displays and sculptures inspired by the elements of fire, earth, air and water add colour to the botanical gardens spring season. I don’t think I will be able get out to Kew to examine for myself but I’ve been sating my curiosity by peering at their Flickr account.

Photo: Kew Gardens

And the thing I’m wondering is this – I’m not sure whether living flowers can create as much of a visually powerful statement as cut ones. The living ones have different requirements – spacing, foliage not removed, water and light requirements. At a very basic level, cut flower arrangements can put any flower next to any other flower plus you can strip out anything you don’t like. In my head floristry can be more painterly or sculptural. I think perhaps the ad campaign (the one above with a firework-esque explosion of blooms) has given me expectations slightly off-base with what the exhibition actually is – I really love it and I suspect I would feel a little let down if the flowers weren’t literally exploding in my face as soon as I entered the greenhouse.

That said, I come from a relatively rural part of the country and am well aware of the aesthetic punch a bluebell wood can pack so I could be entirely wrong!

Have any of you been to see it? If so, I’d love to know what you thought.

Photo: Kew Gardens