Winner of the Silver Flora Medal.
A garden within a garden, step out through patio doors onto a hardwood deck floor and, within a few easy strides, enter the central Pantry Pod of Aralia’s 2009 RHS Chelsea Flower Show garden, Freshly Prepped. The clue’s in the name, the concept of this kitchen garden is focused around the growing of edible crops to consume when they are at their freshest and most nutritious in an outdoor kitchen.
This kitchen garden comes into its own during the spring, summer and autumn months including as it does integral raised growing beds clad in Massarunduba, hard wood and crammed with all manner of edible produce such as a selection of herbs, for making smoothies, teas and salads; a small selection of fruits, including calamondin oranges, lemons, apples and pears in the main ‘growing boxes’; strawberries and tomatoes planted in overhead hanging ‘colanders’ and an Olive tree in a planter for interest. A wide assortment of salad crops, especially baby leaves, and a few vegetables such as runner beans climb on the vertical ‘edible’ wall that maximises available growing space in a contemporary garden style.
The green wall employs a soil less system with edible crops grown hydroponically with an irrigation system to ensure adequate watering, drainage and supply of nutrients. The ‘growing trays’ have drainage holes to take away any excess water, and specialised drainage layers, to retain some storage water, for later take up by the plants.
Ten galvanised steel tubular posts extend vertically and curve overhead to provide a feeling of intimacy and somewhere for overhead lights and to hang ‘colander style baskets’. A low level ‘sofa bench’, integral to the kitchen units, provides a great space to recline and chill. A Massaranduba work surface, provides an extensive area for preparing and chopping food, and a ‘SenSa Granite’ work surface with ‘SenGuard’ finish offers long term protection against stains.