There’s nothing particularly unusual about Wes Fleming's third generation family nursery business, apart from the fact that it is Australia’s largest tree wholesaler, with 60 per cent of the market.
Oh, and it just won the Chelsea Flower Show, which is the World Cup, Olympics and America’s Cup of horticulture, rolled into one.
Wes is the first ever non-Pom to win it. If it were a sport, he would be as famous in Australia as Cathy Freeman or John Bertrand. There’d be a ticker tape parade, keys to the city, and charitable foundations in his name.
As it is, he just got to meet the Queen seven times. When they last chatted, she said: “Wes, I believe this is your last Chelsea. You’ll be missed.”
Yes, 2013 was Wes Fleming’s 9th and last Chelsea. This year there were 15 show gardens entered and Fleming's entry, below, designed by Phil Johnson, took Wes, Phil and the team of 16 from Australia 18 days to build, working 14-hour days, bringing plants in from Italy and Spain and rocks from Scotland.
On May 25th they won, an almost unbelievable Aussie triumph. You bloody ripper!