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Chelsea show garden heading for Slimbridge

Royal Bank of Canada today announced that a permanent home has been secured for the “RBC New Wild Garden” following its appearance at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2011.

After starring at Chelsea, The RBC New Wild Garden will be moved to Slimbridge Wetland Centre, where it will be rebuilt as a permanent attraction.

Designed by Nigel Dunnett with the Landscape Agency, the RBC New Wild Garden will be RHS Chelsea’s first full-scale “rain garden”, designed to capture and use every single drop of rain that falls on it. Featuring an office space built from a former shipping container as its centre-piece, the entire garden is designed as a wildlife habitat, including a green roof and habitat walls. The garden is supported by the RBC Blue Water Project, a wide-ranging, 10-year global commitment to help protect the world’s fresh water resources.

Once moved and rebuilt at Slimbridge, the garden will provide inspiration to visitors in methods of harvesting and conserving water and ways of encouraging wildlife and biodiversity in their own gardens. WWT experts will also be on hand to provide tips and advice on planting and water systems, suggesting practical conservation techniques and ideas that can be taken home and carried out in visitors’ own back yards.

Due to open to the public in late August, this is the second rain garden that RBC has donated to the WWT following the opening of the RBC Rain Garden at the London Wetland Centre in 2010. Both gardens were conceived by the same design team under Nigel Dunnett with the Landscape Agency and were supported with grants from the RBC Blue Water Project.

Lynn Patterson, Director of Corporate Responsibility at RBC, said: “Given the sustainability message that is at the heart of this project, we felt it was very important to secure a suitable and lasting legacy for the RBC New Wild Garden beyond the Chelsea Flower Show. The WWT is the perfect partner to help raise awareness of water management and we are delighted that we will now have two permanent rain gardens in the UK that the public can enjoy.”

Martin Spray, Chief Executive of WWT, said: “Rain gardens give us a way to encourage wildlife whilst providing achievable solutions to some of the big environmental problems that affect us all. We hope that the RBC garden at Slimbridge will inspire our visitors to create their own habitats when they return home. The RBC Rain Garden in our London Wetland Centre is already an immensely popular attraction, and I look forward to replicating that success in Slimbridge.”


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