23 August 2023
Discover Japanese Stepping Stones: Gold-Winning Garden by Adam Marshall
BBC Gardeners' World Live 2023 was a celebration of all things gardening. The event took place at the National Exhibition Centre in Birmingham from 15-18 June and attracted over 100,000 visitors. There was something for everyone with show gardens, beautiful borders, plant stalls, gardening workshops, talks and demonstrations, and even activities for children. The beautiful borders at Gardeners' World Live were a popular attraction. These borders were filled with a stunning array of plants, and they provided visitors with inspiration for their own gardens. Showing how to make the most of smaller spaces. This year's theme was 'My Garden Escape' an area shaped around mental health benefits. We are proud to have worked closely with Adam Marshall also known as 'Green Fingered City Boy' on Instagram who created a beautiful gold-winning border garden with Gardenstone's Japanese Stepping Stones and York Cream Garden Gravel. Here, we got the chance to talk to him about all things gardens...
How did you get into gardening?
Growing up, gardening was all around me, I had family members who gardened, both ornamental and edible. I never really thought gardening was for me though. As a child, my Mum would let me stay up later on a Friday night and watch Ground Force and Gardeners World with her. If I didn't watch those with her, it was bedtime. I witnessed my parents move into a new-build with a garden of mud and transform that garden on a budget, over many years. I believe this subconsciously gave me an understanding, that anyone can create a beautiful garden, whether that be within the traditional understanding of a garden, or tending to plants within another space. We all have green fingers. It wasn't until many years later, that I started to appreciate gardening and the power of it for myself. Without boring you, I had a bad 2019 and I needed something to improve my physical capacity. I decided that something was going to be gardening. And do you know what? I loved it!
Why did you decide to do a Gardener’s World Garden?
It was a pretty spontaneous decision to apply for Gardener’s World. I had been on a TikTok live
stream with another gardener and a garden designer suggested I took part. I laughed off the idea, but internally knew I would love to do it. The deadline for application was the following Monday and so, I gave myself the weekend to create a design, submitted it and thought, if it’s meant to be, it’s meant to be. It was meant to be! A few days later I received an acceptance email, but with a query about sourcing some of the plants, including the large cloud tree, due to the cost of them. Don’t worry, I’ll sort it, I replied! Sure enough, with the help of some amazing companies, family and Instagram fam, I was able to recreate my design.
What Inspired Your Design and the Key Elements in it?
Strengthen your Body, Heal your Mind & Feed your Soul was the title of my border and it was all
about how the garden shapes and nurtures us.
It contained a cloud tree, which represented the gardener standing strong and proud at the end of
the garden, having been shaped and nurtured through the garden, this was framed by a pull-up
bar arch. The colour scheme was fiery to begin with but as you travelled through the garden it calmed and it was a more mindful space at the end. Symbolising how the garden slows us down.
What are your plans going forwards?
So I continue to create content of my garden on Instagram, TikTok and Youtube. I’ve loved
meeting like-minded gardeners on those platforms, so if you would like to too, check out
@greenfingeredcityboy. I do have a website where I am going to write some blogs going forward and have some cool t-shirts on there too, well I think they’re cool! Going forward I’d love to explore garden design more, so maybe I could help you in the future, who knows? Watch this space!
How did Gardenstone Help?
To emphasise the title of this garden, beautiful Japanese Stepping Stones were used from Garden Stone which slowed the user down from the fast pace of life. York cream gravel from
Garden Stone was also used to compliment them. This was softened using sempervivums and
thyme to create a beautiful walkway through the space. Gardenstone were very supportive after I reached out to them, having seen their Japanese Stepping Stones and immediately knowing they were what I had been looking for! They sent me extra in case of an accident and the delivery was prompt. The delivery driver was also a real help - getting it to where I needed it so it could be stored safely for the show.
Shop The Look
Japanese stepping stones
A handmade reconstituted stone product designed to provide a random appearance. Perfect for creating a winding path through the garden. The shape was inspired by the traditional stepping stones used in ancient Japanese gardens, associated with creating a space of calm and tranquillity. Now a popular choice amongst many UK gardeners. The surface of the Japanese stepping stone is riven and the edges are irregular.
York Cream Garden Gravel
Our York Cream 20mm gravel is a traditional gravel from Yorkshire. It has lovely cream, brown and light yellow tones. A hard gravel, ideal for driveways, paths and garden borders. Gravels and decorative aggregates are a popular choice with low-maintenance garden designs. The actual size varies between 10mm and 20mm.
We love working with garden designers, landscapers and customers to achieve their garden goals and collaborate on exciting new projects. Feel free to send over any enquiries for collaborations to [email protected] or via our socials.