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Crabtree & Evelyn presents ‘The Avant Garden’

May 18, 2013 - June 9, 2013

| Free

Crabtree & Evelyn presents ‘The Avant Garden’
Celebrating over 15 years of the Gardeners Collection
14th May -9th June 2013

For the 2013 Chelsea Fringe Festival, Crabtree & Evelyn presents ‘The Avant Garden’ on public display in London’s iconic Covent Garden Piazza.

Designed by Emma Coleman, and inspired by Crabtree & Evelyn’s Gardeners Collection, this contemporary installation showcases innovative and beautiful planting combinations highlighting Crabtree & Evelyn’s history as a pioneer in botanical formulations for over 40 years. The installation will promote public interaction, exploration and engagement through live events and workshops.

The Avant Garden is a celebration of a classic herb garden. Featuring planting displays inspired by Crabtree & Evelyn’s Gardeners Collection, this ‘container’ garden looks to give the traditional herb garden a contemporary design and takes inspiration from Covent Garden’s legacy as the capital’s original flower market.

Commenting on the project, Jacqui Gale, from Crabtree & Evelyn, said: “We are delighted to be part of this exciting project and to be working with the Chelsea Fringe. Emma’s design brings alive the ideals and history of our brand, highlighting the natural ingredients of our products. It is a fantastic way to celebrate over 15 years of our Gardeners Collection.”

With a rich heritage in supporting innovative cultural projects, The Avant Garden joins a distinguished roll call of festivals, artists and designers who have exhibited in Covent Garden Piazza including Jeff Koons, Damien Hirst, Banksy and some of London’s leading creatives.

Bev Churchill, Covent Garden London Brand Director, said: “Culture is a key part of the fabric of the Covent Garden neighbourhood and we are proud of our reputation for curating world-class installations. The Avant Garden celebrates Covent Garden’s rich history as London’s original flower market whilst offering an accessible slice of the great traditions of the Chelsea Flower Show for all Londoners to enjoy.”

The Materials

The Avant Garden’s Corten and recycled wooden clad pods are inspired by the classic wooden puzzle cube. If one were to re-assemble all the pods, they would return to the original cube shape. The Corten steel will ‘age’ during the live installation period, creating a rusty and weathered appearance, whilst the reclaimed wood will add a beautiful and tactile contrast. Emma Coleman, said “I wanted to create an installation with the quality and standards of an RHS Chelsea Show Garden but with a degree of public engagement.”

The Planting

The planting considers the traditional aesthetic of an herb garden, with the signature crabapple tree as a central feature. The crabapple tree is native to Britain and is part of the inspiration behind Crabtree & Evelyn’s name. Herbs are combined with planting that would naturally be found with a wild apple tree, creating a textural and ambient planting palette that will both inspire and relax visitors to the garden. Visitors will be able to traverse around each container and interact with the planting via QR codes, allowing further opportunities to learn and engage with the plants on display.

Water Conservation

Water conservation and management is a core theme within the garden’s design. The design uses a biochar-based compost from Carbon Gold, which saves on watering as biochar can absorb up to six times its own weight of water. Each individual pod represents a volume of water used within the home or garden, allowing an awareness of water consumption. Each reference to water use will help visitors to consider where they can possibly look to save water in their daily lives, so they can fully appreciate the value of this natural resource as individuals, families and gardeners.

Onsite Events
For the duration of the installation, you can pop down to Covent Garden to meet members of The Herb Society, Waterwise, Carbon Gold and GrowUp Gardening. Pick up water conservation and gardening tips whilst also enjoying some special treats courtesy of Crabtree & Evelyn.

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Project Team
Crabtree & Evelyn
Garden Designer: Emma Coleman
Project Director: Anna Paganelli, GrowUp Gardening
Contractor: Hendzel + Hunt
Sub Contractor: Physical Pixels

The Herb Society, <>
Waterwise, <>
Carbon Gold, <>
Hendzel + Hunt, <>
Physical Pixels, <>



May 18, 2013
June 9, 2013
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The Piazza
Covent Garden, London, WC2E 8RF United Kingdom
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