Alexandra Noble Design I Award Winning Garden and Landscape Designer working across London and further afield
Gardens and Landscapes

RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show Garden 2014

A garden filled with hazy grasses and punctuated by defined perennial flower heads. Inspiration for the abstract layout was drawn from the hypocaust system at the Roman Baths in Bath

Hampton Court Palace Flower ShoW GARDEN 2014

Built by The Outdoor Room | Photography by Gary Rogers.

The Roman Baths are central to Bath's identity as a heritage city founded upon natural hot springs. Within the complex, the Romans devised an innovative under floor heating system now known as a Hypocaust. This involved the floor being raised above the ground by regularly spaced columns so hot air from an adjacent furnace could circulate.  

This design for the Hampton Court Palace Flower Show consisted of 9 regularly spaced reflective pools with planting surrounding each. These perfect squares suggested the regularity of the Hypocaust columns and serve as a reminder of the city’s relationship with water. Bounding two edges of the site, the raised walkway allowed one to appreciate the garden from a raised perspective as well as representing the Hypocaust floor as if it had been cut away to reveal the system underneath. 

The concept for the planting is ‘A modern meadow’; the mix of forms and colours is intentionally unusual. Well defined flower heads and shrubs in the foreground contrast against a hazy ‘fluffy’ backdrop evocative of steam rising from the hot spring water.

After the flower show, the garden was relocated to The Bath and North East Somerset Carers’ Centre, a charity supporting people caring for family and friends who need extra support day-to-day.

Plant List:

Aconitum 'Stainless Steel'

Agapanthus campanulatus var. albidus

Allium sphaerocephalon

Anemanthele lessoniana

Dechampsia cespitosa 'Goldtau'

Echinacea purpurea 'Fatal Attraction'

Echinacea purpurea 'White Swan'

Euphorbia seguieriana subsp. niciciana

Lavandula angustifolia 'Hidcote'

Pennisetum setaceum 'Rubrum'

Phlox paniculata 'Dusterlohe'

Rosmarinus officinalis

Santolina 'Edward Bowles'

Sedum 'Jose Aubergine'

Stipa gigantea

All photographs on this page used with permission of Gary Rogers at