Main Content Anchor

Spring Garden Competition

Entries Now Open

This year’s Spring Garden Competition is expected to attract high quality entries from a variety of individuals, families, schools, community groups/organisations and local businesses.

Enter Now

The City of Ryde has a long and proudly history of conducting the Spring Garden Competition. This established community event has been held annually for more than twenty years. The City of Ryde is one of the few local councils still organising and providing a garden competition for its local residents and local community. 

The Spring Garden Competition is a popular community event that has a unique ‘hands on’ quality. Creative and well-tended garden entries are expected from a wide variety of city landscapes including traditional back gardens, courtyards, balconies, river-frontages, corporate green-spaces, community gardens, school yards and large tracts of natural bushland.

This is an inclusive event and we strongly encourage entries from young aspiring green thumbs (children) to older green thumbs (seniors), individual gardeners, families, community groups, different cultural groups, gardeners with different abilities, commercial organisations and small businesses. With eleven categories of entry, there is certainly something for everyone.

Entry Details

  • All entries must be based in the City of Ryde local government area. 
  • Entry to the 2015 Spring Garden Competition is free. 
  • Entries open on Wednesday 1 July 2015 and close on Monday 31 August 2015.


Large Gardens

Large private residential gardens - may be the whole garden or just a section.

Small Gardens
Small private residential gardens - may be the whole garden or just a section.

Courtyard or Balcony Gardens
Private residential garden using pots, planter boxes, ornaments, walled gardens etc.

Edible Gardens
Vegetable gardens, fruit gardens, permaculture gardens etc.

Native & Habitat-friend Gardens
Gardens which feature Australia native plants and include habitat elements to encourage native fauna such as birds, lizards, possums and insects.

Children’s Gardens
Private residential gardens inspired and created by a child, group of children or a family with young children.

School Gardens
Gardens within local primary or high schools where students and teachers or the community have worked together.

Pre-School Gardens
Gardens within local pre-schools where students and teachers or the community have worked together.

Community Gardens
Garden projects where the local community, groups or community organisations have worked together.

Commercial Gardens
Gardens within local businesses and commercial organisations eg. hotels, retirement villages, commercial premises, small and large businesses, universities etc.

Bushcare Sites
For an outstanding contribution made by volunteers at a recognised Bushcare site.

Judging of Entries and Judging Criteria

All entries will be personally judged by a panel of appointed garden judges and horticulture professionals. The City of Ryde will contact entrants to coordinate a suitable time for the judging panel to view each Spring Garden Competition entry. Wherever possible judging will take place during mid-September to early October 2015.

It is preferable that Spring Garden Competition entrants are present at their allocated judging timeslot and during the judging of their entry. Judging generally takes between 10 – 30 minutes depending on the size and nature of the entry. Entrants are encouraged to show the judges around their garden. The judges may ask the entrant some basic questions about their garden and gardening practices.

For most categories, judging will be based on three main factors:

  • Maintenance - the lack of elements such as dead and diseased plants, well presented lawns and clipped shrubs, considered water usage and overall attention to detail. 
  • Design - aspects such as layout, colour, use of line, form and texture, plant use and once again attention to detail within this context. 
  • Intent - the active participation of the entrant, level of knowledge and enthusiasm and extent of third party assistance.

Some categories will have some additional or specific judging criteria:

  • The Children’s Garden, Pre-school Garden and School Garden categories will have additional judging criteria relating to the engagement and participation of the child, children or students.
  • The Edible Garden category will have additional judging criteria relating to edible produce and productive practices.
  • The Native & Habitat-friendly Garden category will have additional judging criteria relating to Australian native plants and the provision of habitat-elements for local fauna.
  • The Community Garden category will have additional judging criteria relating to community engagement and community participation.
  • The Bushcare category will have slightly different judging criteria as it is a specialist area and will take Bushcare principles and best practice into consideration.

All entrants will be invited to attend a Gala Presentation Evening for the announcement of the 2015 Spring Garden Competition winners.

Important Dates

1 July 2015
Entries open for 2015 Spring Garden Competition

31 August 2015
Entries close for 2015 Spring Garden Competition

Early September 2015
City of Ryde council officer will contact entrants to confirm their allocated time and date for judging.

Mid-September to early October 2015
Garden judges accompanied by a City of Ryde council officer will visit and judge all Spring Garden Competition entries on the allocated date at the allocated time slot.

22 October 2015
All entrants will be invited to attend the Gala Presentation Evening at Eden Gardens where you can meet and mingle with fellow gardeners, community representatives and supporters of the event. The highlight of this evening will be the announcement of the 2015 Spring Garden Competition winners and place getters.

Image Gallery

Click on the links below for some inspiration and view photos from some entries from previous Spring Garden Competition events.

More Information

For further enquiries call City of Ryde’s Customer Service Centre on 9952 8222. 

SGC Sponsors

Last updated on 24 August 2015