Tomorrow the 100th Chelsea Flower Show opens to the public. By then of course the flowers will be out and the cushions scattered. But what did these gardens look like in their embryonic design stages?

How did the designers convey what they saw in their heads to the strict and seasoned RHS selectors, to gain a coveted spot in the Chelsea grounds? Here are the ‘before’ renderings. I look forward to comparing them to the end results…


Robert Myers' CAD model for the Brewin Dolphin garden is clean, crisp and handsome. I'll expect to see exactly that when I view the garden this week. Top-notch 'workmanlike' rendering.

Telegraph Garden - Christopher Bradley-Hole Chelsea Flower Show 2013

...whereas Christopher Bradley-Hole's top-shot model is darker, more suggestive and more mysterious. I like the use of lengthening shadow coming 'out' of the picture. I suspect there were mode angles for the RHS selectors to view.. but then again with a reputation like CB-H's, perhaps not.


Kate Gould's wasteland garden model is presented straight on to accentuate the symmetry in the design, and conveys it's various heights well ..but lacks light, shadow and perhaps therefore allure. The, ahem, model's bottom is also showing.


Adam Frost has turned up the light levels and his garden feels sunnier and airier as a result - of course the huge amount of footage he's been given this year also helps! Not sure this above, 3/4 angle view excites me much though. It's a 'don't scare the horses' approach.


Nigel Dunnett's model has been pimped by a CAD professional; these photo-realistic elements and shadows really add depth and solidity.


On the other end of design rendering, the East Village garden by Michael Balston and Marie-Louise Agius relies purely on old-school colour hand drawing. The perspective and depth are communicated well... but against the CAD, does this look winning or winsome?


A more pared back example of hand rendering from Jinny Blom for Prince Harry's African charity Sentebale. I like the use - or absence - of colour to draw the eye. And the penmanship is confident yet delicate. Not sure those twiggy trees do much for me though...


Alternatively, go mad with acrylics! This palette will no doubt suit the hot feel and indigenous materials that Australian nursery Flemings will be showcasing again, so Phillip Johnson's painted entry conveys this really well.


This is Chris Beardshaw's design for Arthritis Research, which aims to convey "a shaded woodland garden, an open formal garden and the Radiant Garden, where there are warm, vibrant colours of pink, oranges, purples and blues" to invoke the charity's work. I'm not seeing a lot of that. [Whisper] It's a bit boring.


Jamie Dunstan's concept, creativity and ardour must have come across in the RHS submission as a whole because, despite being 3D, his model is a bit flat. Maybe just rendering what's to be built can be enough, but I prefer more atmosphere.


Jo Thompson has set herself a hard task; her Food and Environment Research Agency garden warns of the threat that diseases, pests and invasive species pose to British flora. This means dead trees in the design. A tricky sell...


...but the different angles the CAD model supplies gives a more rounded vision of the garden's 'journey'.


An overhead shot pulls back to show the whole garden. Although I suspect the 'pretty' areas will actually look much prettier in real life than they do here.


I reckon the Laurent-Perrier garden is regarded as the designer's chance to blow the budget and bring home a Chelsea banker's dream show-off garden. Will Ulf Nordfjell's more dreamy, delicate rendering mean we get a dreamy, delicate garden? I can't wait to see...

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