Chelsea Flower Show 2019
The Roots In Finland Kyrö Garden
The award from Chelsea Flower Show 2019
The clear Nordic lines of the design, including the charming
100-year-old weather-beaten, naturally grey barn wall and the imposing
granite, will stand out from the vegetation, providing for an overall
atmosphere of timelessness, permanence and perpetuity, which are central
attributes of the Finnish nature, also during the often harsh winters.
“Although we will see this design in bloom, as a designer I need to see
it through the four distinctly different seasons of the Nordic climate
in Finland”, Taina describes. In an urban setting into which the garden
is designed, it will have the desired impact throughout the year,
reminding the owners of the scenery of the countryside in the middle of
the capital city, Helsinki.
The clear Nordic lines and the use of natural stone were also the
hallmarks of the world- famous modern Finnish architect Alvar Aalto
(1898-1976), who used them e.g. in the
design of the famous Finlandia Hall congress and event venue in the
heart of Helsinki, on the waterfront.
The statuesque granite benches in the sunken area of the Roots in Finland Kyrö Garden are very much in this tradition. The Finnish granite features heavily also in the many earlier Art Nouveau style buildings of Helsinki exuding the national romanticism of the newly independent state, which having gained her independence from Russia in 1917 only recently celebrated her first 100 years of independence.
The inspirational biodiversity of Finnish meadows and woodland is not just pleasing to the eye but, with the included butterfly garden
section, speak volumes of the designers passion for ecology, conveying the message of the importance of pollinators to our ecosystem. Coming from the land of thousands of lakes, a cascading water feature reminds the visitors to this garden about the relationship the Finns have with their roots in the country and the much-cherished respite by their countless lakeside and seaside cottages.
Junipers are a given in this Finnish garden, but the remarkable red birches, making the first ever appearance in the Chelsea Flower Show, are rare even in Finland. Lily of the Valley, being the national flower of Finland has its natural space to grow under the trees. Finns, too, love their art and the skillfully crafted silver insects by the artist Ru Runeberg, which decorate the garden in places, are a natural element of it and will not go unnoticed.
The Telegraph: Three of the best small spaces
Taina Suonio’s garden seeks to bring the rich biodiversity of the Finnish countryside to the city. Underlying her design is the research she does at the University of Helsinki: environmental biologist Suonio is an expert in urban greening, lauded for her green roofs….
Iltalehti: Mikä kunnia! Taina loihti ensimmäisenä suomalaisena lumoavan puutarhan arvostettuun näyttelyyn - herttuatar Catherinelta oma versio
The creative force behind the Finnish garden in the Space to Grow –class is a Finnish landscape designer, horticulturist and environmental biologist Taina Suonio, who is no stranger to British and Irish gardening, having lived 13 years in Northern Ireland and participated in the RHS Chelsea Flower Show for 14 years in a row, working with the leading designers on their Show Gardens (Carol Klein, Andy Sturgeon, Paul Stone, Thomas Hoblyn, Professor Nigel Dunnett and Jo Thompson). At the 2018 Show Taina, as the planting Team Leader, helped Mark Gregory to win Gold and reach the coveted Best Construction and the Show Gardens People's Choice Award. Professor Dunnett described her as “my go-to person for show garden planting – a true ecological artist with plants" for
MSc Environmental Policy and Change, BSc Environmental biology, Landscape Designer, Horticulturist
Roslings Manor Gardens
Tel: +358 (0)50 44 35 789