The Chelsea Flower Show, a high-profile event in the UK for gardening enthusiasts, has installed a De-Militarized Zone garden, complete with wooden watchtower, barbed wire and spent ammo shells:
Created to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the Korean conflict, this garden makes use of the vast treasure trove of indigenous plants that have thrived in the almost pristine conditions in the sanctuary of the demilitarised zone (DMZ). The design highlights the tensions and lasting effects of the conflict.
The barbed wire fence surrounding the garden creates a feeling of mystery and unease. Carefully considered installations feature the remains of warfare, including defensive walls, trenches and charred trees. The fence is hung with cans and bottles containing letters from separated families and friends to illustrate the sense of longing felt by people kept apart by the conflict.
The watch tower reminds visitors of the surveillance of the DMZ and also provides an observation point for the garden. A memorial chair commemorates war veterans and victims. A stream flows through the garden, defying the barriers of human conflict and depicting the feelings of love and tension that the designer believes co-exist in the DMZ.