Chelsea Flower Show 2016
The RHS Chelsea Flower Show runs from May 24 - 28Toby Melville/Reuters

The prestigious Chelsea Flower that has driven crowds to West London for over two centuries has bloomed once more. Although officially founded in 1804, it has been at The Chelsea Hospital since 1913 and this is where people will flock to see the latest offerings at the prestigious horticultural event.

To ensure you see everything from the irises to the aspidistra, IBTimes UK offers plenty of information to make the most of your visit.

When is the show?

The show is open to the public at the Royal Hospital in Chelsea from 24- 28 May, 2016.

Where is taking place?

The show is held annually at the Royal Hospital in Chelsea, London, SW3 4SL

When is it open?

Opening times

Tuesday - Friday (24-27 May) 8am–8pm

Saturday (28 May) 8am–5:30pm

How do I get there?

Tube: The nearest stop is Sloane Square (District and Circle Lines) which is a ten-minute walk from the grounds.

Bus:

The following buses stop nearest to the venue: 11, 137,211, 360

The following buses stop near Sloane Square C1, 19, 22 and 319.

Visit tfl.gov.uk to plan your journey fully.

Train:

London Victoria is the closest train station to the show. For information on rail services, visit the National Rail website

Shuttle bus service:

London General operates a shuttle service from 7am to 8pm Tuesday to Friday (finishes at 7.20pm Saturday), between the following stops:
Victoria, Buckingham Palace Road, Stop Z5 (pick up only)
Royal Hospital Road at Royal Hospital Stop U (set down only)
Chelsea Embankment North Side, west of Ambulance Gate
Chelsea Bridge Road, temporary stop outside Infirmary Gate (pick up only)
Victoria, Buckingham Palace Road, Stop 11

Prices for this service are as follows:

£4 adult single, £4 concession single (senior citizens, children and travelcard holders)
£6 adult return, £5 concession return

Cycling

Cycle racks are available in Burton's Court opposite the London Gate entrance.

Parking

Public parking is available in Battersea Park and can be pre-booked with your tickets.

Battersea Park is located outside the Transport for London congestion zone and is approximately 20 minutes' walk from the show.

A park & ride service is available, the cost of which is included in the parking charge; buses, including a mobility bus, operate at frequent intervals between Battersea Park and the showground's Bull Ring Gate entrance.

Sat nav

If you are parking at Battersea Park and using a sat nav, please use the postcode SW11 4BY which will take you straight to the Rosary Gate entrance.

River services

You can arrive by river with MBNA Thames Clippers to Cadogan Pier, the RB6 service operates during weekday peak times. RHS members receive 1/3 off single fares. Please see the Thames Clipper website for more information.

Coach travel and parking

Visitors with an afternoon ticket (valid from 3.30pm) or an evening ticket (valid from 5.30pm) cannot be admitted to the show earlier than the times specified. Therefore, please do not drop your passengers off too early, as this causes severe traffic and visitor congestion.

Coach parking is available at Battersea Park:

Battersea Park, London SW11 4NJ
(entrance via Rosary Gate off Queenstown Circus)
Tel: 0800 358 0058
Tariff: £45 per day

Where can you buy tickets still: Check the RHS website for remaining tickets


What can't you miss?

The show is resplendent with flora and fauna, so make sure you don't miss the best bits. From prize gardens to luxurious displays, take a look at the big hitters.

Jo Thompson's Chelsea Barracks Garden - Thompson's eighth Chelsea Flower Show celebrates London's history and most notably the Chelsea Pensioners. The water feature within also pays homage to the River Westbourne, one of 'the lost rivers of London' that used to flow under Chelsea Barracks and under the grounds of the Royal Hospital (where the Chelsea Flower Show is held). Bronze sculptures by British artist Barbara Myers also feature within the tranquil design.

chelsea flower show
Rachel Warne

Juliet Sargeant poses in her Modern Slavery Garden

The first black female to design a garden at Chelsea, her imposing installation is created to remind visitors of modern slavery in the 21st century, with a central oak tree in homage to William Wilberforce who fought to abolish slavery in the 19th century.

chelsea flower show 2016
The Modern Slavery Garden at the Chelsea Flower ShowJack Taylor/Getty Images

'Celeste' by Simon Gudgeon - an imposing, life-size sculpture made up of 1,000 bronze leaves, the piece, that is one of three works, is inspired by working with English National Ballet principal ballerina Ksenia Ovsyanick.

chelsea flower show
'Celeste' by Simon GudgeonGetty

'Harrods British Eccentrics Garden' by Diarmuid Gavin - a playful microcosm of the Great British Garden reimagined by Diarmuid Gavin in an homage to English cartoonist and illustrator, William Heath Robinson. Be sure to stick around to see the trees revolve, which takes place every 15 minutes.

chelsea flower show
Getty

'Behind Every Great Florist' designed by Veevers Carter with New Covent Garden Flower Market.

Something you certainly shouldn't, and probably can't miss, is the 10ft (3m) high floral installation of the Queen created by New Covent Garden Flower Market in honour her Majesty's 90th birthday. The colourful display is made up of 10,000 flowers, 112 buckets and 300m of ribbon - the equivalent weight of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee State Coach.

Chelsea Flower Show 2016
A Chelsea Pensioner looks through a floral image of the QueenChris Jackson/Getty Images

The Senri-Sentei - Garage Garden designed by Kazuyuki Ishihara - an inventive way to show how a little fauna can turn the most perfunctory spaces into an artistic masterpiece.

chelsea flower show 2016
The Senri-Sentei - Garage Garden designed by Kazuyuki IshiharaJack Taylor/Getty Images

The Watahan East & West Garden' designed by Chihori Shibayama and Yano Tea

chelsea flower show
A tea ceremony is performed in 'The Watahan East & West Garden' designed by Chihori Shibayama and Yano Tea at the Chelsea Flower ShowGetty

The Field of Poppies by Phillip Johnson - a striking piece of immersive art by Phillip Johnson who teamed up with Lynn Berry and Margaret Knight to use almost 300,000 handcrafted individually crocheted poppies that covers almost nearly 2,000sq m (21,000sq ft) across the central path of Chelsea Hospital.

chelsea flower show 2016
A volunteer stands at the entrance to the poppy installationAdrian Dennis/AFP
Queen welcomes Prince Harry at Chelsea Flower ShowIBTimes UK