Apprentices at the Eden Project in Cornwall have been awarded Best in Show for their trade stand at this year’s Cornwall Garden Society Spring Flower Show at the Royal Cornwall Showground in Wadebridge (April 1 – 2).
The team of four apprentices were set the challenge of creating a show garden around the theme of food and chose to replicate an idyllic community garden complete with fruits, herbs, and vegetable plants, living walls, and raised beds of varying heights to allow all ages and abilities to get involved.
All materials and plants used within the show garden are upcycled and sourced from the Eden Project site.
Central to the show garden was a communal seating area for people in the community to come together and share the produce that had been grown.
The community garden comes ahead of the Coronation Big Lunch, which is bringing tens of thousands of communities together across the UK to celebrate the Coronation of His Majesty The King and Her Majesty The Queen Consort over the weekend of 6–8 May 2023.
Community is one of the key themes that will be championed across the weekend’s celebrations. During the last month, the organizers of the Coronation Big Lunch have been on a hunt to find the UK’s friendliest communities – those that go above and beyond to support others around them.
The winning community will receive their very own Big Lunch Garden, inspired by the show garden and installed with the helping hand of the Eden Project team, a Coronation Big Lunch hamper, and £2,500 towards a community project.
Peter Stewart LVO, Chief Purpose Officer at the Eden Project, which is the organizer of the Coronation Big Lunch, said: “It’s a huge triumph for our apprentices to take part in such an esteemed show. Creating this fantastic community garden is a great example of resourcefulness, teamwork, and togetherness that we can all take home to our own communities. It will be fantastic to see this replicated for real for the winners of The Big Lunch garden.
“The team should be exceptionally proud of what they have achieved, particularly in this momentous year.”
The horticultural team also went on to achieve first place in the individual plant Competitive Classes with their Berberis darwinii, Darwin’s barberry, and Primula’ Cowichan Blue’.
Up to five apprentices join the Eden Project horticulture team each year for a two-year placement. Within that time, they get to experience working across the 30-acre Outdoor Gardens, within the iconic Biomes, and across the surrounding Outer Estate, which encompasses more than 175 acres.
Known as the ‘Chelsea of the South West,’ the annual Spring Flower Show has been held annually for more than 100 years and attracts RHS judges, holders of National Plant Collections®, and the best nurseries, traders, and landscape artists.
The Big Lunch is the UK’s annual community celebration for neighbors and communities, bringing millions of people together in a nationwide act of community friendship on the first weekend in June every year since 2009.
It’s an idea from the Eden Project made possible by The National Lottery and is supported by PG tips, Iceland and The Food Warehouse, and the Julia and Hans Rausing Trust.
For more information: