The Ryde area has a long history of gardening which can be traced back to early European settlement and the annual Spring Garden Competition showcases the variety of green-thumbed local talent, whether it be in the Edible Garden or Most Beautiful Courtyard category.
For most categories, judging is 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 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.
Best Children's Garden
1st Place - Grandchildren of Barbara Ford
Barbara’s grandchildren work on this enchanting garden. They dig, plant and play in the garden, arranging flowers and fairies, crystals, night time lights and you can even see a few dinosaurs roaming the grounds.
2nd Place - Sarah Yep
Sarah’s garden project includes flowers and herbs, with a few fairies and gnomes floating around. With an addition to the family it looks like Sarah may have some help in a few years on her garden.
3rd Place - Aaron Pease
This bright and cheery patio garden that is well cared for and fun for the kids play in.
Best Pre-School/Daycare Garden
1st Place - Mia Mia Institute of Early Childhood
This amazingly designed and very inviting garden brings back memories of being in Never Land with Peter Pan. The kids are invited to explore and use their imagination in this child care centre. The use of recycled material and nature really enhances the visual entertainment you receive.
2nd Place - St Georges Preschool
This garden features raised beds for children to grow vegetables and herbs as well areas of native shrubs and grasses for imaginative play spaces.
3rd Place - Gumnut Cottage
Beautifully presented and welcoming, this garden actively promotes the physical and mental health and well-being of the children in the care of the Centre. These extensive gardens encourage sensory interaction with abundant fragrance and texture and a variety of outdoor garden spaces.
Best School Garden
1st Place - Kent Road Public School
All classes are regularly involved with the care of this beautiful and abundant garden. Projects include seed collection and propagation. They have an orchard, which runs adjacent the raised beds and the shade house.
2nd Place - Our Lady Queen of Peace Primary School
The classes do a great job looking after this vegetable garden and are assisted by their teachers. All the children participate actively watering, planting, harvesting, weeding and of course eating what they grow.
3rd Place - Ryde East Public School
Children from various classes participate in garden maintenance on a regular basis in the beds around buildings and also the vegetable garden.
Most Beautiful Garden - Large
1st Place - Dallas Grenier
Dallas has cultivated much loved garden full of interest and mystery. Everywhere you looked something unique stood out. It is filled with a myriad of superb plants and has been planned to have interest and colour through all seasons of the year. It is a plant lover’s utopia.
2nd Place - Angela Thomas
This well designed garden, takes into account aspect and aesthetics, consequently, the plants and spaces have been sculpted to the highest artistic degree. The dwarf mondo grass lawn spreading across the lower level is extraordinary.
3rd Place - Michelle Hillyer
Michelle has a well-established garden with a strong cottage feel, vegetable beds and chickens. Elements of quaintness bring enchantment into this wonderful family garden.
Most Beautiful Garden - Small
1st Place - Rae Roy
The initial impression of this small garden is outstanding. A beautiful oasis, established over thirty years ago and changing over the years as the family has changed. The garden planting reflects special moments in the family’s life. When being judged she was asked a question, about hosting weddings in her back yard in this delight on the eyes.
2nd Place - Adrienne Hick
This beautiful and wonderfully small garden wraps around the perimeter of a ground floor villa, with eastern, northern, western and southern aspects. The beds are filled with a variety of flowering plants all tied to underlying colour schemes.
3rd Place - James Foster
This garden is well mulched with an array of natives and annuals, cactus, succulents and orchids, this villa garden has it all.
Most Beautiful Commercial Garden
1st Place - Northern Suburbs Memorial Gardens and Crematorium
This is an outstanding commercial garden which is beautifully designed, planted and maintained to the highest level. The garden includes mature plantings as well as newer additions. The formal elements are softened with flowering shrubs and deciduous trees.
2nd Place - Calvary Retirement Community
Calvary Retirement Community’s gardens are always beautifully presented and maintained to the highest standard, the communal areas as well as the resident’s own gardens are a springtime delight for the senses.
3rd Place - Springfree Trampolines
Just a few years old, this garden has settled in well to a deceptively demanding site. Due to an inability to access depth of soil in addition to being a very exposed site, this challenging garden has been designed along the lines of a roof top garden.
Best Bushcare Site
1st Place - Waterloo Park Bushcare Group
This group was formed in 2002 to help to improve this important bushland remnant that forms a wildlife corridor connecting with the Lane Cove National Park. The group has been involved with all stages of bush regeneration including primary clearing, follow up and fine maintenance weeding. There has been very pleasing regeneration throughout the area, especially after a burn a few years ago while small planted areas have helped to protect the core bushland. This group has attracted a number of younger volunteers. Recent fauna sightings highlight the importance of the work being undertaken by the volunteers.
2nd Place - Darvall Park Bushcare Group
The group has been volunteering in the reserve since 2002. The dedication and enthusiasm of the group is evident with the quality of the work undertaken and the recent formation of the Friends of Darvall Park. The group has a reputation for being very welcoming to newcomers, providing afternoon tea and recently guest speakers. Members make an enormous contribution to Council’s management of the park, providing innovative suggestions as well as a willingness to do the hard work.
Best Edible Garden
1st Place - Deborah Alderton
This extraordinary example of a Permaculture design is producing a multitude of edible crops. Drainage is directed so the water moves via swales, through garden beds and onto the fruit trees and associated plantings. Grey water is filtered through gravel and reed beds which then flow into ponds. To top this all off was the trout farm that was using an aquaphonics system with some of the raised beds.
2nd Place - Julie and Kim Jardine
A garden that follows the principles of permaculture. This garden is well maintained and beautifully presented. The chickens and fish live alongside the herbs, vegetable and fruit trees.
3rd Place - Margaret Alexander and Michael Hetherington
This garden is an abundant sun-filled garden featuring a wide variety of edible plants in a suburban setting. When you walk through this garden, you feel you are basking in the sun on some Mediterranean Island.
Most Beautiful Courtyard or Balcony
1st Place - Shirley Lynch
A burst of colour and delight to the eye, this mature little garden belies the attention to detail and hours of care. Well maintained and beautifully presented.
2nd Place - Doreen Rouse
This courtyard has colour to spare, especially yellow, apricot, blue, pink, red and to top it off a perfectly maintained green bunny in a pot.
3rd Place - Maureen Bennett
The enthusiasm of the gardener is apparent in this small garden which is well maintained and colour coordinated.
Page Last Updated: 24 November 2011