Chelsea Flower Show will be an online event this year

By Heather Cichowski, with files from Zach Harper

Good news, gardening fans: The Chelsea Flower Show, one of the Royal Family's favourite events of the year, is going online due to the coronavirus pandemic.

In March, the Royal Horticultural Society said the annual gardening and outdoor event, which was originally to take place May 19-23, was cancelled due to COVID-19. But the latest news is the 2020 Chelsea Flower show will be an online event.

RHS Director General Sue Biggs shared a message on the RHS website about the online Virtual RHS Chelsea Flower Show, which will take place May 18-23.

"All of us here at the RHS have been extremely touched and moved by all the support, kindness and offers for help from the horticultural industry, our members, volunteers, show visitors, the BBC and so many more following the sad cancellation of RHS Chelsea Flower Show and our other shows and garden events until 30 June due to Covid-19," she began.

"When so many people, businesses, charities and everyone in the horticultural industry are going through such tough and challenging times, we are even more grateful for this support and people taking time to get in touch.

"Which is why I wanted to write this note and thank you all – it has meant so much to all of us who have the honour and joy of creating this world famous gardening show."

Duchess Kate shows the Queen and Prince William around her Back to Nature garden at the 2019 Chelsea Flower Show. Photo: © GEOFF PUGH/AFP via Getty Images

Sue said after cancelling all events until June 30, two things became evident. The first is that many people were disappointed about there not being a show. As for the second...

"Many feel they need gardening in their life now more than ever before for their mental and physical wellbeing during this national emergency," she continued. "This applies to everyone from those who are having to self-isolate to families planning, maybe for the first time, to grow their own food.

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"For these reasons, and to do more to support the industry, the RHS will create a Virtual RHS Chelsea Flower Show, to celebrate our great horticultural industry and gardening heritage with 'press day' being Monday 18 May 2020 and the Virtual Show running from Tuesday 19 May to Saturday 23 May," she continued.

The new event is still in the early planning stages, so details will be announced on the RHS website in the coming weeks.

Sue promised the virtual Chelsea Flower Show will involve the gardening community.

"We will of course be asking for the ideas and involvement of growers, nurseries, designers, landscapers and tradestands too and look forward to sharing ideas very soon," she said.

This is exciting news for fans and regular attendees of the show. It is also interesting for those who do not live in London because an online event could give people from around the world a chance to see the show, wherever they are self-isolating.

The BBC reported the virtual Chelsea Flower Show there will have daily "school gardening clubs" to provide activities for families wanting to garden together. There will also be lunchtime sessions with RHS advisers who will hold interactive Q&A sessions to help everyone get their green thumbs.

Members of the Royal Family and royal fans love the traditional gardening event. In 2019, Duchess Kate helped design the Back to Nature garden. Additionally, Kate and Prince William brought Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis to see the garden. The Queen loves the event and typically attends every year.

Here's hoping that royals will be involved in the virtual Chelsea Flower Show in some way!

The Queen was the subject of this huge floral exhibit at the 2016 Chelsea Flower Show. Photo: © Adrian Dennis - WP Pool/Getty Images

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